Circulate Lounge at Test Risk Change

At the Circuit ‘Spark Change’ Conference Circulate members presented artefacts and evidence from our work in the Circulate ‘Evaluation Lounge.’

During Circuit, Circulate have worked together to document, reflect on and evaluate the Circuit programme and the difference it has made.

We have:

  • Kept our own records in journals and blogs
  • Documented events and festivals using photography, film and drawing
  • Made films about experiences of Circuit
  • Interviewed audiences and other people engaged in Circuit
  • Analysed the data we gathered
  • Identified learning
  • Informed programme development
  • Shared learning and findings beyond Circuit partnership

In short we have articulated our experience of Circuit and other young people’s experiences of Circuit, so that our opinions could inform the programme. We also devised and used many bespoke, innovative and creative mechanisms and tools for evaluation.

One of the tools developed was the ‘evaluation lounge.’ Devised by Bradley, Circulate member from FIrstsite, the rationale for the Evaluation Lounge is that people are more likely to talk openly and honestly in comfortable and familiar surroundings, where they are happy to spend a significant amount of time. The type of in depth conversation that can be facilitated in such a lounge often elicits insightful feedback, commentary and actionable insights.

Lou Greenwell from Wysing and Kettle’s Yard and myself set up an Evaluation Lounge at the conference so that people could have interesting conversations in the space and find time to reflect on their experiences of the conference.

People also got to see some of the work Circulate had done over the course of Circuit. This included examples of the techniques we have developed and used as well as examples of the evidence gathered through those techniques. People were able to leaf through journals from Nottingham, St.Ives and Manchester, read postcard feedback from Late at Tate, look at examples from the ‘target’ evaluation process developed by Sufea Mohamed-Noor for the Mostyn Glitch festival, read ‘Dear Whitworth’ feedback letters, watch videos made at festivals, including examples of Jack Makin’s evaluation through Mandalas technique, used at the St. Ives Switch festival, view a range of creative artefacts from Firstsite, play with Wysing and Kettle’s Yard’s Evaluation Jenga game and read Circulate guides from different festivals.

We also presented a ‘Photo Album’ of Circulate members’ journeys through Circuit and some drawings made by Joff Winterhart, as examples of drawing as a form of documentation.

Circulate members also had a key role in evaluating the conference itself, with The Whitworth’s lead Circulate member, Jack Makin taking photos and Tate Collective Liverpool Circulate member, Sufea Mohamed-Noor creatively gathering feedback.