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Instructional Design Models, Theories & Methodology:

The Kirkpatrick Model & the Hamblin Model

The Kirkpatrick Model

Donald Kirkpatrick developed a four level model to measure the effectiveness of the training programs in 1959.The following table shows the four levels proposed by him :

Level 4

What kind of benefits to the organization were due to training?

Level 3

How much change in the behavior of the participants (in their workplace) is due to training?

Level 2

How much change in attitude and improvement in knowledge and skill is due to training?

Level 1

What's the reaction of participants towards the training program?


The following video from YouTube explains the 4 levels of Kirkpatrick Model:

Kirkpatrick's Four Levels of Evaluation

Level One - Reaction

Level Two - Learning

Level Three - Performance (behavior)

Level Four - Results

As we move from level one to level four, the evaluation process becomes more difficult and time-consuming, however, the higher levels provide information that is of increasingly significant value.The first three-levels give you information for improving the learning package. While the fourth-level gives you the returns for investing in the learning process.

Kirkpatrick's Strengths

Kirkpatrick's Weaknesses

Kirkpatrick's Educational Uses

Kirkpatrick says, "Trainers must begin with desired results and then determine what behavior is needed to accomplish them." (Kirkpatrick Partners, Berrett-Koehler, 1993) Many schools are going to a design based on backwards planning, starting with what the student will be able to do in the end to plan a lesson. Kirkpatrick's model supports the idea of backwards planning.

Backwards Planning

A Brief Hostory of Evaluation

Brief History of

Hamblin's Five Levels of Evaluation

According to Hamblin, evaluation is “any attempt to obtain information (feedback) on the effects of a training program and to assess the value of the training in the light of that information.” (Rae, 2002) To Hamblin, evaluation includes both evaluation and validation.

The Five Levels of Hamblin’s Evaluation Model: (Rae, 2002)

Level 1: Reaction
Determining the learner’s reaction to the course. Very similar to Kirkpatrick’s model where the trainers ask questions about the learners’ reactions to the course immediately following.

Level 2: Learning
Determining what the learners have learned in knowledge, skills and attitude through the course. This is very similar to Kirkpatrick’s model where the trainers assess the learning of the students.

Level 3: Job Behavior
Evaluating any change in job performance as a result of the learning in the course. Again, similar if not identical to Kirkpatrick’s model where the trainer assesses the changes in the job performance of the students after the training.

Level 4: Functioning
Determining the effect of the course on the organization as a whole such as cost benefit analysis. This is similar to Kirkpatrick’s model, however Hamblin separates this into departments/ levels of organizations and then further into the entire company or organization as described below.

Level 5: Ultimate Value
Evaluating how the event has affected the “ultimate profitability and/or survival of the organization.” This overall, company-wide level is not included in the Kirkpatrick model.



dmcgaughy ( Feb 3, 2011) Kirkpatrick's Four Levels of Evaluation. Retrieved August 17,2011 from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBpI0B5PtaA

Clark, D. (2008). Flipping Kirkpatrick. Dec. 17, 2008. Retrieved August 20, 2011 from: http://bdld.blogspot.com/2008/12/flipping-kirkpatrick.html

Clark D. (2010 ) Kirkpatrick's Four-Level Training Evaluation Model [Video]. Retrieved August 17,2011 from http://www.nwlink.com/~donclark/hrd/isd/kirkpatrick.html

Kirkpatrick partners. (2011). The Kirkpatrick Philosophy. Retrieved August 20, 2011 from http://www.kirkpatrickpartners.com/OurPhilosophy/tabid/66/Default.aspx

Rae, L. (2002). Assessing the Value of Your Training:The Evaluation Process from Training Needs to the Report to the Board. Burlington: Gower Publishing Company

Tamkin, P, Yarnell, J, Kerrin, M, Kirkpatrick and Beyond: A Review of Models of Training Evaluation IES Report Grantham Book Services LTD. Retrieved August 27th, 2100