Objective and Meaningful Evaluations

Soccer 6

Delivering Objective and Meaningful Evaluations

by Dr. Roy Patton

Most of us have completed or read an evaluation like the one below:

Technique: John is a good passer, with a good first touch, a cultured left foot and a strong ability in the tackle.
Overall: 1 2 3 4 5

The technical aspects that can be evaluated are voluminous. We could begin by listing the general technical parameters such as: dribbling, passing, shooting, heading, first touch, ball control, and ball winning. We could single out shooting, for example, and break the technique down into subsets, such as finishing with the head, torso, thigh, knee, and all parts of the foot before adding angle, distance from goal, trajectory of the ball (ingress and regress) and velocity.

Thus, we can see that the Technique grade assigned to John, above, leaves much to be desired and is just a subjective snapshot!

How, then, do coaches provide objective  evaluations? Here are some tips:

  • Train and employ competent administrators to perform the protocol.
  • Provide the administrator with all necessary written explanations, videos and instruments to ensure that the protocol is administered precisely as intended.
  • Ensure that equipment is standardized and regularly calibrated.
  • Ensure each test is focused on only one factor.
  • Ensure that each athlete will know precisely what is required of him or her and will have the same amount of time to prepare for the measurement at hand.
  • Ensure that each measurement protocol is highly standardized in terms of administration, organization and environmental conditions.
  • Ensure that the measurement is designed so that it can be easily replicated by another administrator.

What can be measured can be quantified, what can be quantified can be evaluated, and what can be evaluated can be improved.

This article is adapted from the Summer 2014 issue of GO Indoor. For more articles like this, visit USIndoor’s Members-Only Archives.

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