evidence-based programs generally refers to interventions that have been evaluated and found to produce the desired results. To assist schools in the selection and use of programs that are effective and useful, the use of 'scientifically-based or evidence-based research' to guide decisions about which programs and strategies to implement is encouraged.
Whilst some programs may not have yet been formally evaluated, some have had preliminary evaluation and some have extensive research demonstrating the effectiveness of their programs. For a program to be considered to have the highest level of research evidence it must have the following:
- a series of randomised, controlled trials that are well designed and implemented, which have been replicated by at least two independent research teams (for a trial to be randomised, participants must have been randomly allocated to the intervention or the control conditions, with both groups being comparable on demographics)
- self-report and diagnostic measures used must have strong, psychometric, properties and evidence of validation for use with Australian populations
- evidence of effectiveness in two or more settings, including a setting similar to your school (effectiveness can be shown through comparisons of the intervention group and the control group pre- and post-intervention, with long term follow up comparisons at a minimum of 3 years after the intervention to show maintenance of gains and true intervention effects)
- published evidence in reputable A1 ranked international peer reviewed journals (highest rank quality, prestigious journals in the field).