Theory of change essentials

Learn what a theory of change is and work through the key stages in developing one. Discover key principles, apply best practice and understand how it complements other planning and accountability processes.


8 All Saints Street, London, N1 9RL GB

Course dates

Learn how to develop a theory of change by working through the critical stages of the process, including power analysis, systems mapping, pathways of change, evidence and assumptions.

Understand where theories of change add value, how they can be used to learn, adapt and assess and explain impact, and how they complement other planning and accountability processes.

This face-to-face course will prepare you to develop a quality theory of change for your programme or organisation which meets industry-recognised quality standards as well as donors’ requirements.

Book the course on its own, or together with our two day course Impact assessment and evaluation which follows straight afterwards.

We also offer this course online. 

Course structure

One-day face-to-face course. The course runs from 10:00 am - 5:30 pm with registration open from 9:30 am. 

Who is it for?

People who want to understand or develop a theory of change at programme or organisational level. Anyone applying for funding who wants to be confident in preparing a theory of change which effectively supports their application and demonstrates the impact of their programme.

What you will learn

By the end of the course you will be able to:

  • Explain what a theory of change is and how it relates to existing methods for planning and evaluation
  • Follow the steps required to develop a quality theory of change
  • Use appropriate tools and processes at each stage of developing the theory of change
  • Explain how theories of change can be used by organisations to demonstrate impact
  • Assess the quality of a theory of change using industry-recognised quality markers


1. Introduction  

  • Background, key components, principles and concepts
  • What theories of change look like
  • How they relate to strategic plans, logframes and M&E frameworks
  • The six steps in developing a theory of change

2. Understanding how change happens

  • How to look at the big picture of change in relation to specific thematic areas/sectors
  • Stakeholder and systems mapping and strategic assets
  • Understanding potential for influencing change

3. Developing a change pathway

  • Developing change pathways
  • Developing and evidencing assumptions

 4. Informing project and programme plans, M&E and impact assessment

  • How to use theories of change to develop project and programme plans
  • What to monitor and evaluate
  • How impact assessment fits in
  • Reflecting on and adapting theories of change

Course prices

Band 1


Band 2

Bond members >£2M annual spend

Band 3

Bond members <£2M annual spend

* 10% off if you book 8 weeks in advance; 5% off 3 or more bookings.

Contact us for special discounts if you're a student or unemployed.


off if you book early*


off multiple bookings*

Event dates

Monday, October 19, 2020

17 places available


Angela Kellett

Angela is an independent consultant specialising in all aspects of monitoring and evaluation including assessing impact and theory of change.


8 All Saints Street
N1 9RL
United Kingdom