Robert Earl Stake
September, 1997

Robert Stake is a professor of education at the University of Illinois, best known for his work in educational program evaluation. Since 1975 he has been the director of the Center for Instructional Research and Curriculum Evaluation. Once a specialist in psychometrics and instructional research, his present orientation is naturalistic or ethnographic field study, particularly of the classroom. He has set retirement from the University of Illinois for August 1998.


Born December 18, 1927, Adams, Nebraska. Married Bernadine Evans. Children: Jeffrey, Benjamin, Sara and Jacob. Grandchildren: Christopher, Laura, Alison, Benjamin and Samuel.
B.A., major in mathematics and minors in naval science and Spanish, University of Nebraska, 1950. Teaching certificate, 1951.

M.A., major in educational psychology, University of Nebraska, 1954

Ph.D., major in psychology, Princeton University, 1958.

Present Positions at the
University of Illinois:
Professor of Education (Departments of Educational Psychology and Curriculum and Instruction).

Director of CIRCE, formerly the Center for Instructional Research and Curriculum Evaluation.




Mathematics instructor, U.S. Naval Academy Preparatory School, Bainbridge, Maryland.
Psychometric Fellow, Educational Testing Service.
Assistant Professor, Department of Educational Psychology, University of Nebraska at Lincoln. Promoted to Associate Professor, 1961. Named College of Education Faculty Research Coordinator, 1962.
Associate Professor and Associate Director, Office of Educational Testing, University of Illinois. Promoted to Full Professor in 1965. At the retirement of J. Thomas Hastings, named Director of CIRCE, 1975.
Arriving on campus in 1963, Stake assisted Thomas Hastings, Lee Cronbach, and Jack Easley in the creation of the new evaluation center, CIRCE, and in developing a program of research on program evaluation, helping also in the administration of the statewide high school testing program, in remediating mathematics deficiencies of students enrolled in statistics courses and in instructing advanced graduate students in the development of expectancy tables, factor analyses of test scores, customized educational measurements and multidimensional scaling of teacher characteristics.

Over the years Stake concentrated his research and teaching on program evaluation theory and practice, gradually taking up qualitative research methods, contributing to a worldwide reconsideration and use of naturalistic case studies in education. Throughout his quarter century on campus he participated regularly in the governance and enhancement of the college.


Off-campus study:

Stanford University, Summer, 1964.

University of Gothenburg, Fall and Winter, 1973.

Center for Applied Research in Education, University of East Anglia, Spring 1974.

Center for the Study of Evaluation, UCLA, Summer, 1978.

Institute for Educational Policy Studies, Harvard, 1981.

Federal University of the Espirito Santo, Brazil, Spring, 1984.

Fulbright Academic Specialist. Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana-Azcapotzalco, Mexico, October 12-27, 1984.

Elected vice president of AERA, principal officer of its Division B, Curriculum Studies, 1968.

Elected vice president of AERA, principal officer of its Division D, Measurement and Research Methodology, 1970.

Fulbright Fellowship, 1973 (Sweden).

Fulbright Fellowship, 1984. (Brazil).

See Chapter 7, "Stake’s client centered approach to evaluation" in Daniel L. Stufflebeam and Anthony J. Shinkfield’s Systematic Evaluation. Kluwer-Nijhoff, 1985.

Awarded the Lazarsfeld Award for theoretical contributions to program evaluation, American Evaluation Association, 1988.

See Chapter 7, "Robert E. Stake: Responsive Evaluation and Qualitative Methods" in William Shadish, Thomas Cook and Laura Leviton's Foundations of Program Evaluation. Sage, 1991.

An honorary doctorate, honoris causa, conferred by Uppsala University, May, 1994.


At Nebraska, Stake taught statistics, research methods, tests and measurements, and human development. At Illinois, at first he regularly taught courses in statistical methods for educational research. Later he shared the teaching load in program evaluation courses with Professor Hastings and still later developed qualitative research methods courses. The history of his course teaching on campus, as of this date, is as follows:

EDPSY 390, Elements of Educational Statistics, 10 terms.

EDPSY 496, Statistical Methods in Education, 7 terms.

EDPSY 399, Introduction to Program Evaluation, 2 terms.

EDPSY 399 (or C& I 399), Case Study Research Methods, 18 terms

EDPSY 431, Evaluation of Educational Programs, 2 terms.

EDPSY 498, Theories of Educational Evaluation, 12 terms.

C & I 409, Qualitative Data Analysis, with Renee Clift, 3 times.

C & I 490, Evaluation for School Based Management, once.

C & I 490, Philosophies of Assessment, with Robert Ennis, once.

C & I 490, Evaluation of Curricula, 2 terms


Off-campus teaching:

Guidance and Counseling Institute, Central State College, Ellensburg, Washington, Summer, 1963.

College of Education, University of Connecticut, Summer, 1967.

College of Education, University of Colorado, Summer, 1970.

College of Education, University of British Columbia, Summer, 1983.

College of Education, Simon Fraser University, Summer, 1985.

College of Education, University of British Columbia, Summer, 1988.

College of Education, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Fall, 1989.

With professors from the Medical College, University of Illinois at Chicago, developed a master's degree program for specialists in medical education, 1967.

Developed graduate course on Case Study Research Methods (1978).

Developed a training unit entitled Seeking Sweet Water--Case Study Methods in Educational Research. (1979). Washington, DC: AERA.

Simultaneously but independently from Edith Terwilliger, developed a 300 level course, Introduction to Educational Evaluation, 1981-82.

For school administrators in Chicago, developed C&I 399, Evaluation for School-Based Management, 1992

"Learning parameters, aptitudes, and achievements" (1961). Psychometric monograph No. 9. Richmond, VA: William Byrd Press.

"Program evaluation, particularly responsive evaluation" (1974) New Trends in Evaluation. Report No. 35, pp. 1-20. Gothenburg, Sweden: Institute of Education, University of Gothenburg. Reprinted (1975) as Paper #5 in Occasional Paper Series. The Evaluation Center, Western Michigan University. Also in William B. Dockrell and David Hamilton (Eds.), Rethinking Educational Research. (1980). Kent, England: Hodder-Stoughton. Also as: Excerpts from: "Program Evaluation, Particularly Responsive Evaluations." Evaluation Practice, 12, 1, February, 1991, 63-76.

Evaluating the arts in education: A responsive approach (1975). Columbus, OH: Charles Merrill.

Evaluating educational programmes: The need and the response (1976). Paris: OECD. With a separately-bound supplement: Case studies in the evaluation of educational programmes.

With Jack Easley, et al.: Case studies in science education (1978). CIRCE.

Quieting reform (1986). Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press.

With Stephen Kemmis: Evaluating curriculum (1988). Deakin University Press.

With Liora Bresler and Linda Mabry (1991). Custom and cherishing, arts in the elementary schools. National Music Educators Conference.

With James Raths, et al.: Teacher preparation archives: Case studies of NSF-funded middle school science and mathematics teacher preparation projects (1993). Urbana, IL" CIRCE, College of Education.

The art of case study methods (1995). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

With W. Laurence Gulick: "The effect of time on size-constancy" (1957). American Journal of Psychology, 70, 276-279.

With William A. Mehrens: "Reading retardation and group intelligence performance" (1960). Exceptional Children, 26, 497-501.

"Overestimation of achievement with the California Achievement Tests" (1961). Educational and Psychological Measurement, 21, 59-62.

"A non-mathematical quantitative aptitude test for the graduate level: The QED." (1962). Journal of Experimental Education, 31(1), 81-83.

With Martin L. Maehr: "The value patterns of men who voluntarily quit seminary training" (1962). Personnel and Guidance Journal, 40, 537-540.

"The teaching machine: Tool of the future or passing fancy" (1963). Phi Delta Kappan, 45, 247-249.

"Activity, novelty, and structure in study-hall assignments" (1966). American Educational Research Journal, 3(1), 7-12.

With Frank B. Womer and John R. Hills: "The answer-sheet purchaser’s dilemma" (1966). Journal of Education Measurement, 3, 269-276.

"The countenance of educational evaluation" (1967). Teachers College Record, 68(7), 523-540. (This article has been identified as one of the ten most frequently cited references in educational evaluation.)

"Evaluation of college teaching" (1967). Journal of Dental Education, 30, 247-259.

"A research rationale for EPIE" (1967). EPIE Forum, 1, 7-15.

"Toward a technology for the evaluation of educational programs" (1967). AERA Monograph Series on Curriculum Evaluation, 1, 1-12. Rand McNally.

"Technologically based instruction and materials" (1968). In E.L. Morphet and D. L. Jesser (Eds.), Planning for Effective Utilization of Technology in Education, 302-307. Denver, CO: Designing Education for the Future: An Eight-State Project.

"Testing in the evaluation of curriculum development" (1968). Review of Educational Research, 38(1), 77-84.

"Evaluation design, instrumentation, data collection, and analysis of data" (1969). In Joseph L. Davis (Ed.), Educational Evaluation. Columbus: OH: Ohio Department of Education.

"Language, rationality, and assessment" (1969). In Improving Educational Assessment and an Inventory of Measures of Affective Behavior. Washington, DC: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Reprinted (1975) in David A. Payne (Ed.) Curriculum Evaluation: Commentaries on Purpose, Process, Produce. Lexington, MA: D.C. Heath.

"The humanities and the burden of responsibility" (1969). Journal of Aesthetic Education, 3(2), 84-89.

With Terry Denny: "Needed concepts and techniques for utilizing more fully the potential of evaluation" (1969). In Ralph W. Tyler (Ed.), Education Evaluation: New Roles, New Means, Sixty-eighth Yearbook, Part II, National Society for the Study of Education, 370-90. University of Chicago Press.

"Objectives, priorities, and other judgment data" (1970). Review of Educational Research, 40(2), 181-212.

With Dennis D. Gooler: "Measuring educational priorities" (1971). Educational Technology, XI(9), 44-48.

With James L. Wardrop: "Gain score errors in performance contracting" (1971). Research in the Teaching of English, 5(2), 226-229. Revised as "Performance contracts and test errors" (1972). Reading Research Quarterly, 6(3), 323-325.

"Measuring what learners learn" (1973). In Ernest R. House (Ed.), School Evaluation: The Politics and Process. Berkeley, CA: McCutchan.

"Testing hazards in performance contracting" (1973). In Allan C. Ornstein (Ed.), Accountability for Teachers and School Administrators, 106-118. Belmont, CA: Fearon.

With Stephen Kemmis. "Operational vs. judgmental assessment of teacher competence" (1974). Educational Leadership. 31(4), 322-325.

"Making school evaluations relevant" (1976). North Central Association Quarterly. 50(4), 347-352.

"To evaluate an arts program" (1976). Journal of Aesthetic Education, 10(3-4), 115-134. Reprinted (1981) in George W. Hardiman and Theodore Zernich (Eds.), Foundations for Curriculum Development and Evaluation in Art Education.. Champaign, IL: Stipes.

With Gordon A. Hoke: "Evaluating movement/dance in a downstate district" (1976). National Elementary Principal.. 55(3), 52-59.

With Gail A. Parks: "Reflections on the evaluation of teaching" (1976). National Association for the Advancement of Humane Education Journal, 3, 3-10.

With Patricia Scheyer: "A program’s self-evaluation portfolio" (1976). Studies in Educational Evaluation, 2, 37-40.

"A theoretical statement of responsive evaluation" (1976). Studies in Educational Evaluation, 2, 19-22.

"The case study in social inquiry" (1978). The Educational Researcher, 2.

"Validating representations -- the evaluator’s responsibility" (1979). In Robert Perloff (Ed.) Evaluator Interventions: Pros and Cons. Beverly Hills: Sage.

With Ellis B. Page: "Should educational evaluation be more objective or more subjective?" (1979). Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 1(1), 45-48. Partially reprinted (1981) in Discourse, 1(2).

"Case study methodology: an epistemological advocacy" (1981). In Wayne Welch (Ed.) Case Study Methodology in Educational Evaluation. University of Minnesota.

With James A. Pearsol: "Evaluating responsively" (1981). In Ronald S. Brandt (Ed.), Applied Strategies for Curriculum Evaluation. ASCD.

With David E. Balk: "Briefing panel presentations" (1982). In Nick E. Smith (Ed.), Communication Strategies in Evaluation: New Perspectives in Evaluation, 3, 259-268. Beverly Hills: Sage. Reprinted (1982) in Research on Evaluation Program Newsletter, 5(1), 2-6. Portland, OR: Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory.

With Deborah Trumbull: "Naturalistic generalization" (1982). Review Journal of Philosophy and Social Science, 7(1-2), 1-12.

"Estudos de caso em pesquisa e avaliacao educacional" and "Pesquisa qualitativa/naturalista--problemas epistemologicos" (1983). Educacao E Selecao, 7, 5-14 and 19-27.

"Stakeholder influence in the evaluation of Cities-in-Schools" (1983). In Anthony S. Bryk (Ed.), Stakeholder-Based Evaluation. New Directions for Program Evaluation #17, 15-30. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

"Case study" (1985). In John Nisbet (Ed.), World Yearbook of Education, 1985: Research, Policy and Practice, 277. London: Kogan Page.

"An evolutionary view of educational improvement" (1985). In Ernest R. House (Ed.), New Directions in Educational Evaluation. London: Falmer.

"Ricerca qualitativa e comprensione pedagogica" (1985). Dirigenti Scuola, 1.

"An evolutionary view of education improvement" (1986). In Ernest House (Ed.), New Directions in Educational Evaluation. London: Falmer.

With Deborah C. Rugg: "Augmenting evaluation with case-study thinking" (1986). Journal of Healthcare, Education, and Training, 1, 14-17.

"An evolutionary view of programming staff development" (1987). In Marvin F. Wideen and Ian Andrews (Eds.), Staff Development for School Improvement: A Focus on the Teacher. New York: Falmer.

"Seeking sweet water--case study methods in educational research" (1988). In Richard Jaeger (Ed.), Complimentary Methods for Research in Education. Washington, DC: AERA.

"Evaluation at Grays Harbor" (1989). Pacific Education. Also in Robert Stake and Lizanne DeStefano (Eds), "Perceptions of effectiveness: two case studies of transition model-programs." Champaign: University of Illinois College of Education Transition Institute.

"The evaluation of teaching" (1989). In Helen Simons and John Elliott, editors, Rethinking Appraisal and Assessment. Milton Keynes: Open University.

The teacher, standardized testing and prospects of revolution. (1991) Phi Delta Kappan, November.

With Paul Theobald, "Teachers' views of testing's impact on classrooms." (1991). In Robert E. Stake, editor, "Using Assessment Policy to Reform Education," Advances in Program Evaluation, Volume 1, Part A.

"Retrospective on 'The countenance of educational evaluation,'" (1991). A chapter in the 1991 NSSE Yearbook , Part II, edited by Milbrey McLaughlin and Denis Phillips.

"Pedagogic and psychometric perception of mathematics achievement." In Donald Broady, editor, Education in the Later Twentieth Century. Stockholm Institute of Education Press (1992).

With Liora Bresler: "Qualitative research methodology in music education" (1992). In Richard Colwell, editor, Handbook of Research on Music Teaching and Learning. Shirmer Books, (1992).

"Case studies" (1994). In Norman K. Denzin and Yvonna S. Lincoln editors, Handbook of qualitative research. Sage.

With Linda Mabry, "Case study for a deep understanding of teaching," (1995). In Allan Ornstein, editor, Teaching: theory and practice. Allyn & Bacon.

"The invalidity of standardized testing for measuring mathematics achievement," (1995) In Thomas A. Romberg, editor, Reform in school mathematics and authentic assessment. Albany: SUNY Press.

"The virtual reality of systemic effects of NSF programming in education." (1995). In Joy A Frechting, editor, Footprints: Strategies for non-traditional program evaluation. Washington, D.C.: NSF.

With Senta Raizen, Edward Britton, Jeremy Kilpatrick, Douglas McLeod, and Norman Webb, "Case studies in mathematics education." And With Senta Raizen, "Underplayed issues." (1996). In Senta Raizen et al., Bold ventures. Dordrecht: Klewer.

"Advocacy in evaluation. A necessary evil?" (1997). In Eleanor Chelimsky and William R. Shadish Jr. (editors) Evaluation for the 21st Century. Sage.

With Douglas B. McLeod, Bonnie P. Schappelle, Melissa Mellissinos, and Mark J. Gierl, 1996. Setting the standards: NCTM’s role in the reform of mathematics education. In Senta Raizen and Edward D. Britton, editors, Bold ventures. Washington D.C.: National Center for Improving Science Education.

With Linda Mabry, "Ethics in program evaluation" (in press). Scandanavian Journal of Social Welfare.

With Christopher Migotsky et al., "The evolving synthesis of program value" 1997. Evaluation Practice, 18, 2, pg. 89-103.

"The fleeting discernment of quality." In Linda Mabry, editor, "Evaluation and the post-modern dileman." (In press) Advances in Program Evaluation. JAI Press.

"Hoel’s Elementary Statistics, A review" (1960). Educational and Psychological Measurement, 20, 871-873.

"A review of Library School and Job Success by Stuart Baillie" (1964). Journal of Education for Librarianship, 5(2), 137-141.

"The Vocabulary Test -- GT (A review)" (1964). In O.K. Buros (Ed.), Sixth Mental Measurement Yearbook. New Brunswick, NJ: Gryphon.

With J. Thomas Hastings: "The Stanford Achievement Battery, 1964" (1964). Personnel and Guidance Journal, 43, 178-184.

With Peter A. Taylor: " A review of Problems in Measuring Change, C.W. Harris (Ed.)" (1964). Educational and Psychological Measurement, 24, 720-722.

"Comments on Professor Glaser’s paper entitled ‘Evaluation of instruction and changing educational models’" (1968). Occasional Report No. 14, 1-18. Los Angeles: UCLA, Center for the Study of Evaluation of Instructional Programs.

"A review of the review of the Handbook" (1977). Journal of Educational Measurement, 14(3), 293-395.

"An evaluator's review of Part 3 of the Handbook, 'How the curriculum is shaped" (1992). Journal of Curriculum and Supervision, 8, 1, Fall.

"An evaluation review of the Handbook of research on curriculum" (1992). Journal of Curriculum and Supervision, Fall, 8, 1, 16-19.

With Linda Mabry, "Aligning measurement with education" (1994). Educational Researcher, January.

"The effects of TV instruction on individual learning curves" (1959). U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Office of Education, Cooperative Research Project 537(8190). Lincoln: University of Nebraska.

With Martin L. Maehr: "The influence of need on binocular resolution and size judgment" (1960). U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Office of Education, Cooperative Research Project M-3599(A). Lincoln: University of Nebraska.

With T. Douglas McKie, John B. Bianchini and Peter A. Taylor: "Expectancy tables for predicting academic marks at the University of Illinois" (1964) CIRCE.

With Douglas D. Sjogren: "Level of activity and effectiveness of learning" (1964). U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Office of Education, Cooperative Research Project, NDEA Title VII Project 753. Lincoln: University of Nebraska.

With Gene V Glass and Peter A. Taylor: "Report of the evaluation of the AERA 1966 pre-session on ‘The design of educational experiments’" (1966), CIRCE.

With D.F. Hackett and J.A. Schad: Report on the summer 1966 industrial arts institutes (1966). U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Office of Education, NDEA Contract DEC2-6-001005-1005. Washington, DC: Consortium of Professional Associations for the Study of Special Teacher Improvement Programs (CONPASS).

With Craig Gjerde: "An evaluation of TCITY, the Twin City Institute for Talented Youth, 1971" (1974), AERA Monograph Series on Curriculum Evaluation, 7, Rand McNally, Reprinted (1975) as Evaluation Report #1, The Evaluation Center, Western Michigan University.

With Melvin E. Hall: "Evaluation report 1975 -- of Project City Science" (1975), CIRCE.

With Stanley L. Helgeson, Jack Easley, and Ira R. Weiss: "The status of pre-college science, mathematics, and social studies educational practices in U.S. schools: An overview and summaries of three studies" (1978). National Science Foundation Report SE 78-71, Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

With Claire Brown and Gordon Hoke: "Evaluating a regional environmental learning system" (1979), CIRCE.

With Bernadine Evans Stake: Non-sexist teacher education project field trial: evaluation report (1980), CIRCE.

With Deborah Trumbull: "Vitalization of humanities teaching: An evaluation report of PDHDS" (1982), CIRCE.

With Noreen Michael, Maria da Penha Tres, Stephen Lichtenstein and Mellen Kennedy: "An Evaluation of the Joint Educational Specialist Program" (1985), CIRCE.

With Robin McTaggart and Marilyn Munski: "An Illinois pair: school art in Champaign and Decatur." (1984), Rand Corporation.

With Lizanne DeStefano and Terry Denny: "Perceptions of effectiveness: Two case studies of transition model-programs" (1989). Transition Institute.

"Situational context as an influence on evaluation design and use" (1990). In R. Stake (Ed.), Issues in Research in Evaluation. Improving the Study of Transition Programs for Adolescents With Handicaps. Transition Institute.

"A housing project elementary school" in Jeri Nowakowski, Monica Stewart and William Quinn, editors, NCREL/SFA Chicago School Reform Study Project. (1992) North Central Regional Educational Laboratory. Referred to elsewhere as "Harper School."

"State of arts education: arts education program evaluation" (1992). A briefing paper for an NEA and DED conference on "The Arts in American Schools: Setting a Research Agenda for the 1990s." Annapolis, May 17-20.

With Ruth Whitelaw: An evaluation of Especially for educators and other aspects of the teacher education programs at The Saint Louis Art Museum (1992). St. Louis: The Museum

"Pedagogic and psychometric perceptions of mathematics achievement" (1992). In Donald Broady, Editor, Evaluation in the Late 20th Century. Stockholm Institute of Education Press.

"An evaluative review of the Wisconsin School Performance Reports (School Report Cards)" (1992). Requested by the North Central Regional Educational Laboratory.

With Cynthia Cole, Finbarr Sloane, Christopher Migotsky, Carmilva Flores, Betty Merchant, Mindy Miron and Colleen Medley: "The burden" (1994). Evaluation report of the Chicago Teachers Academy for Mathematics and Science, 1993-94.

With Carmilva Flores, Mindy Basi, Christopher Migotsky, Mikka Whiteaker, Aminata Soumare, Tresa Dunbar, Linda Mabry, Aimee Rickman, and Vinni Hall: "Restructuring" (1994-95). Evaluation report of the Chicago Teachers Academy for Mathematics and Science, 1994-95.

With Mikka Whiteaker, Elvira Lima, Matthew Hanson, Christopher Migotsky, Carol Mills, Sheri Yarbrough and Kristin Powell. "Strategies" (1995). Evaluation report of the Chicago Teachers Academy for Mathematics and Science, 1994-95.

With Douglas McLeod, Bonnie Schappelle, Melissa Mellissinos, and Mark Gierl. "Setting the standards: NCTM’s role in the reform of mathematics education" (1996).

With Theresa Souchet, Renee Clift, Linda Mabry, Mindy Basi, Mikka Whiteaker, Carol Mills, and Tresa Dunbar. "School Improvement." Evaluation Report of the Chicago Teachers Academy for Mathematics and Science, 1996.

With Lizanne DeStefano, Delwyn Harnish, Kathryn Sloane, and Rita Davis. "Evaluation of the National Youth Sports Program." (1997) CIRCE.

"Predicting success of the early starter" (1960). Overview, 32-34.

"A 650 program for fitting Thurstone’s Hyperbolic Learning Curve" (1961). Educational and Psychological Measurement, 21, 135-137.

"A study of activity in learning" (1963). Programmed Instruction, 3, 5-6.

With Douglas D. Sjogren: "Error variance in multidimensional scaling" (1963). Psychological Reports, 12, 305-306.

"A research rationale for EPIE" (1967). EPIE Forum, 1, 7-15.

"Educational information and the ever-normal granary" (1967). Research Paper #6, Laboratory of Educational Research, University of Colorado.

"An opinion of the evaluation of Title III" (1968) Paper written for the Committee of Special Consultants to the 1967-68 Title III Evaluation Study, Richard Miller, Chairman. CIRCE.

"Educational objectives" (1968), CIRCE.

"PACE evaluation" (1968) In Richard Miller (Ed.), PACE: Catalyst for Change, Report No. 6 of the Second National Study of PACE, 195-233, University of Kentucky.

With Terry Denny: "EP = ER?" (1968). Educational Psychologist, 5(3), 3, 8-9.

"Evaluation kit: tools and techniques" (1969). Educational Product Report Information Supplement #5. NYC: Educational Products Information Exchange Institute.

"Generalizability of program evaluation: the need for limits" (1969). Educational Product Report, 2, 39-40. NYC: Educational Products Information Exchange Institute.

"The accountability notebook: a collection of papers on the many areas of responsibility of the schools" (1971), CIRCE.

"Educational technology and hybrid corn" (1971), CIRCE.

"Lab and center evaluation" (1971), CIRCE.

"The seeds of doubt" (1972). Educational Forum, 36(2), 272-272.

"Focus or portrayal" (1972). Evaluation and Measurement Newsletter, 14(1-2). Toronto: Ontario Institute for Studies in Education.

"The issues about objectives" (1972). AFT Quest Consortium Yearbook, 1972, 28-29. Washington, DC: American Federation of Teachers.

"School accountability laws" (1973). Journal of Education Evaluation, 4(1).

"Responsive evaluation" (1973.) ERIC Abstract, Research in Education, ED 075 487.

"Some alternative presumptions" (1979). Evaluation News, 3. Reprinted (1975) as Report #1, Evaluation Report Series. Western Michigan University.

"On seeing and measuring" (1978). Journal of Curriculum Studies, 10(3), 265.

"What social science does for education" (1979), CIRCE.

"Quality of education and the diminution of local control in schools in the United States" (1980). In Needs of Elementary and Secondary Education in the 1980’s, 161-168. Committee on Education and Labor, U.S. House of Representatives. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

"Setting standards for educational evaluators" (1981). Evaluation News, 2(2), 145-148.

"Persuasions, not models" (1982). Evaluation Research Society Newsletter, 6(2) 8. Reprinted (1982) in Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 6(2) 8.

"The two cultures and the evaluation evolution" (1982). Evaluation News, 10-14.

"Two observations" (1983). Evaluation News, 4(3).

"Evaluation research and program evaluation: a personal interpretation" (1985). Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 7(3), 243.

With Elizabeth Gama and Maria da Penha Tres: "A Brazilian Mutirao in the Schools" (1986). Practicing Anthropology, 8, 3-4.

"Confusing standardization with standards" (1987). The Networker, 2, 3.

State of arts education: Arts education program evaluation" (1992). NEA and DED conference on "The arts in American Schools: Setting a research agenda for the 1990’s." Annapolis, May 17-20.

Differentiation and standardization of aims (1993). ERIC TMO19885.

"Arts teacher education: custom and cherishing: improvisation and adaptation" (1993). Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education, 117, Summer.

"Case study: Composition and performance" (1994). Bulletin #122, Council for Research in Music Education.

Mathematical Techniques in Psychology (1956), principal investigator, Harold Gulliksen, Princeton University and Educational Testing Service, project on "Learning Parameters, Aptitudes, and Achievements" under Office of Naval Research Contract Nonr 1858-(15), Project Designation NR 150-088, and National Science Foundation Grant G-642.

"The effects of TV instruction on individual learning curves" (1959). U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Office of Education, Cooperative Research Project 537(8190). Lincoln: University of Nebraska.

"The influence of need on binocular resolution and size judgment" (1960). U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Office of Education, Cooperative Research Project M-3599(A). Lincoln: University of Nebraska.

With James H. Beaird and Douglas D. Sjogren: "Sampling distributions of error in multidimensional scaling" (1962). Cooperative Research Project #1253, Office of Education, U. S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.

"Level of activity and effectiveness of learning" (1964). U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Office of Education, Cooperative Research Project, NDEA Title VII Project 753, Lincoln: University of Nebraska.

With Patricia Scheyer: "Technical assistance on evaluation of arts programming for the schools" (1974). Cleveland Area Arts Council.

With Melvin Hall: Evaluation of Project City Science (1975) for the National Science Foundation.

With Jack Easley, "Case studies in science education" (1976-79) for the National Science Foundation.

With Claire Brown and Gordon Hoke: "Evaluating a regional environmental learning system" (1979). Subcontract through University of Virginia from U.S. Office of Environmental Education.

With Bernadine Evans Stake: "Non-sexist teacher education project field trial" (1980). Funded by the U. S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare. CIRCE.

With Deborah Trumbull: "An Evaluation of PDHDS" (1980) for the National Endowment for the Humanities.

With James Raths: "Field Evaluation of a Film Strip" (1984) for the Foundation for Teaching Economics.

With James Raths: "Evaluation of Madonna College's Humanities Writing Project" (1984) for the National Endowment for the Humanities.

"Case study of school art in Champaign and Decatur" (1982-84) for The J. Paul Getty Trust.

"Evaluation of the State Gifted and Talented Program." (1987) for the Indiana Department of Education.

With Ted Zernich, Charles Leonhard et. al. National Arts Educational Research Center, University of Illinois funded by National Endowment for the Arts. Project on fifty state correspondents and project on case studies of ordinary teaching of the arts.

"Teacher Preparation Archives Study" (1991-1992) for the National Science Foundation.

"Evaluation of the Chicago Teachers Academy" (1993-1998) for the Academy.

"Bridges," a national study of children’s museums, Cleveland Childrens Museum.

"Evaluation of the National Youth Sports Program," a federally funded program for 400 poverty area children each summer, for the National Collegiate Athletic Association. (1996-97).

"Evaluation of the VBA Reader Focused Writing Program," US Veterans Benefits Administration (1997).


Forming networks has been an enduring activity for Stake. With Len Cahen in 1970, he organized the May 12 Group, a problem-sharing group of evaluation researchers from across the country. The group continues to meet, with perhaps half the participants new each year. In 1987, Stake gathered international researchers interested in studying the effects of mandated achievement testing, named it the ECAP group, published a newsletter and continued the exchange. Several ECAP people took joint sabbaticals in Melbourne in 1991 to continue the study group activities. Over the years Stake has participated extensively in the following organizations:

American Education Research Association,

Psychometric Society (early years only),

American Psychological Association, (early years only),

Social Sciences Education Consortium (early years only),

Directors of State Testing Programs,

National Council on Measurement in Education,

Phi Delta Kappa,

Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Under the sponsorship of Phi Delta Kappa, he participated in the organization of a professional society, the Evaluation Network for the exchange of ideas about program evaluation in education, 1971. (see following entry).

Participated in the 1975 organization meeting of the Evaluation Research Society, a professional organization proposed by Marcia Guttentag. This organization later merged with the Evaluation Network and was renamed the American Evaluation Association.

Participated in the organization meeting of the British Educational Research Association, Liverpool, 1974 and the European Evaluation Association, London, 1995.


Stake regularly brought visitors to campus for collaboration and exchange of ideas. He organized the following conferences to bring together scholars from distant places and to honor the works of pioneers in the field:

Workshop on Cross-Curricular Objectives, two weeks, 1965.

Seminar on Methods of Evaluation (Cronbach, Scriven, and all), 1965

Allerton Conference on Evaluation Problems, 1967

CIRCE Visitors Week, Nov. 2-6, 1970.

CIRCE Workshop #4. Nov. 8-12, 1971.

Case Study Workshop, Center for Advanced Study, 1976

Case Studies in Science Education Conference, Allerton, 1977.

Museum Evaluation Conference, Smithsonian Institute, 1977.

J. Thomas Hastings Retirement Symposium, 1978.

Spring Conference, Center for Advanced Study, 1979.

PDHDS Evaluation Conference, Levis Center, 1981.

Research Retreat, Illini Union, 1982.

Visitors Week, March 1-6, 1983.

Len Cahen Memorial Conference, Center for Advanced Study, 1983.

CIRCE Allerton Retreat, April 4-5, 1984.

Terry Denny Retirement Conference, 1985.

ECAP Assessment of Assessment Meeting, December, 1986

Case Study Researcher Orientation Sessions, Stockholm, 1986.

IRRSAE Conference on Classroom Evaluation, Bologna, Italy, 1986.

Conference on Effects of Changes in Assessment Policy, Urbana, 1987.

Conference on Manpower Issues in Assessment, CIRCE, 1988.

ECAP Meeting, October 19-21, 1989, Urbana.

J. T. Hastings Memorial Conference, Fall, 1991.

Workshop on Evaluation and Self-evaluation in Youthwork and Education, Tubing, 1996.


Stake has served on numerous editorial boards, regularly assisting in review of manuscripts for such journals as:

Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis

The Educational Researcher


Pacific Education

Journal of Educational Evaluation

Evaluation Comments

New Directions in Program Evaluation

Studies in Educational Evaluation

Qualitative Inquiry

Revista Electronica de Investigacion y Evaluacion Educativa


Stake was organizer (in 1967) and only editor of the AERA Monograph Series in Curriculum Evaluation.

Stake was organizer and continues to be series editor of Advances in Program Evaluation published by JAI Press.


Papers presented at annual meetings of the American Educational Research Association:

"Elementary science telecasts, coordinated for instruction and inservice training," 1963.

"An emerging theory of evaluation: Borrowings from many methodologies," 1967.

"An approach to the evaluation of instructional programs (Program portrayal vs. analysis)," 1972.

"Overview and critique of existing evaluation practices and some new leads for the future," 1972.

"Should educational evaluation be more objective or more subjective?" Debate with Ellis B. Page, 1978.

"Using case study methods to study national curricula," 1978.

"Collecting and interpreting data responsive to issues and concerns," 1980.

"Staff development in two small Midwestern districts," 1984.

"Follow-up of the NSEDP executive summary," 1984.

"Art education and critical thinking," 1984.

"Is naturalistic research phenomenological?" 1985.

"Evaluation as intrusion into governance," 1986.

"Response to Evelyn Jacob's 'Variability Within Anthropology: Implications for Qualitative Research in Education,'" 1990.

"The Curriculum as a Shaping Force," 1992.

"Differentiation and Standardization of Aims," 1993.

"Rene Magritte, constructivism, and the researcher as interpreter," 1994.

"Methods and findings of the CIRCE internal evaluation study (TAMS)," 1995.

"Evoking the troubling image: A study of "auto-biographied" performance in a 5th grade social studies classroom," 1996.

"The teaching of advanced evaluation: One 16-page article can be enough" With Christopher Migotsky and Rita Davis, 1997.

A sampling of other presentations:
Teaching machines--for what?" (1960). Joint Conference of the Nebraska Association of School Administrators.

"Error variance in multidimensional scaling" (1962). American Psychological Association.

"Evaluating college student achievement" (1962). Hastings College Faculty Conference.

"Programmed learning and teaching machines" (1963). Lutheran Colleges Faculty Representatives Workshop.

"Evaluation of programmed instruction" (1964). National Society of College Teachers of Education.

"The psychologist’s role in curriculum reform" (1965). Southeastern Psychological Association.

"Evaluation of curricula" (1966). Loyola University, Chicago.

"Test validity in experimental and curriculum research" (1966) Vocational Education Research Seminar, Ft. Collins.

"Educational research in the local schools" (1966). Planning Educational Experiments Institute, Tempe, Arizona.

"How can the Evaluative Criteria be revised to better evaluate quality?" (1967). North Central Association.

"Two approaches to evaluating instructional materials" (1968). American Psychological Association.

"National assessment" (1970). Invitational Conference on Testing Problems. Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service.

"Formative and summative evaluation" (1971). Work Conference on Evaluation of the Experimental School Program. Boulder, CO.

"Philosophy and principles of evaluating teacher performance" (1972). Summer Work Conference of Deans and Directors of Resident Instruction in Agriculture, Boseman.

"The suitability of assessment data for resource allocation and educational evaluation" (1974). Speaking Out: Law, Education and Politics. Invitational Conference on Educational Assessment and Education Policy. ETS

"Evaluation of art in education programs" (1975). National Art Education Assn.

"Current concerns in evaluation" (1976). Peter Taylor Memorial Conference, University of Manitoba.

"The responsibility to validate representations." (1978). Evaluation Research Society.

"NSF case studies in science education: Field reports from eleven districts" (1978). American Association for the Advancement of Science..

"The validity of district-wide test means" (1978). Second National Conference on Testing, San Francisco, sponsored by McGraw Hill.

"Case study methodology: An epistemological advocacy" (1981). Minnesota Evaluation Conference.

"Excellence, evaluation, and curricula" (1983). Mauritz Johnson Retirement Symposium, Albany.

"Non-traditional methods of evaluating programs" (1984). Second Annual Educational Research, Evaluation and Testing Conference, Richmond, VA.

"Critical thinking as part of art education" (1985). INSEA/SOBREART Pre-session, Rio de Janeiro.

"Qualitative inquiry to promote understanding" (1985). Second International Congress of Educational Administration, Brasilia.

"An evolutionary view of educational improvement" (1985). National Conference on Educational Evaluation, Vitoria, Brazil.

"Evaluation retrospect and prospect" (1985). Evaluation Research Society.

"Responsive program evaluation" (1985). Instituto Regionale di Ricerca Sperimentazione e Aggiornamento Educativi per L'Emilia-Romagnato, Bologna.

"An essential individualization of excellence and equity." (1986) American Association of College Teachers of Education, Chicago.

"The effect of reforms in assessment in the USA." (1989). British Educational Research Association, East Anglia.

"Quality control and deceptive packaging: Does reform require accurate portrayal of education?" (1989). University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

"The teacher, standardized testing and prospects of revolution." (1991). AERA Public Interest Panel, Washington, DC.

Evaluative case studies for National Science Foundation archives (1992)

State of arts education program evaluation (1992). NEA and DED Conference on "The Arts in Elementary Schools."

"Use of journal assignments in the Evaluation course," (1994). AEA paper.

With Renee Clift "Rethinking evaluation: GATT, the electronic super-highway; Chicago school reforms," (1995). ECER paper, Bath.

For all program evaluations, there’s a criterion problem. (1995). UK Evaluation Society.

Case Study Methods in Program Evaluation (1996). Minnesota Evaluation Studies Institute.

Stress on Cognitive Teaching in School Systems Prioritizing Student Teaching. (1997). ERLI Biennial Conference.


Over the years Stake’s consultancies on program evaluation and related matters have been numerous, inside the university, with school districts, with government agencies and with foundations. An illustrative selection of some of the more enduring consultancies:

Federal evaluation of Title I, Follow-Through.

American Association of Georgraphers, assisted in the evaluation of NDEA institutes for teachers of geography. Similarly worked with those for teachers of industrial arts, civics, fine arts and economics.

Educational Products Information Exchange, NYC, helped design and advised on studies of instructional materials and equipment.

Center for Applied Research in Education, University of East Anglia, particularly with regard to evaluation of the UK's University Computer Aided Learning project.

North Central Regional Accrediting Association, Boulder, Colorado and Chicago, Illinois, evaluation design

National Study of School Evaluation, Arlington, VA, member of research committee designing protocols for site visits to schools.

Twin Cities Institute for Talented Youth, St. Paul, Minnesota, assisted with program evaluation of summer institutes each summer on the MacAlester College campus.

Experimental Schools Program, U. S. Office of Education, helped design and monitor evaluation studies.

Participated in designing evaluation of the federally funded regional laboratories and research and development centers, National Institute of Education.

JDR 3rd Fund, NYC, assisted in development of plans for evaluation of arts education programs, with the Jefferson County, Colorado, School District a particular example.

OECD-CERI, Paris, France, prepared manuscript and conference program on the evaluation of educational programs.

Cleveland Area Arts Council, assistance with local art groups self-evaluation.

Project on Alternatives, Uniondale, NY, promotion of a "seven-year study" of open schools and alternative education generally.

National Science Foundation, research and development of science education, proposal review panels.

American University, Washington, D.C., evaluation of field trials of teacher education modules on sex equity.

Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory, Portland, Oregon, advice on evaluation services, particularly with regard to adaptation of evaluation models from other fields.

IFAPLAN (a technical assistance agency), Cologne, Germany, consultation over a four year period on the evaluation of European Community demonstration projects for transition of youth from school to work.

American Institutes for Research, advisory committee for the evaluation of Cities in Schools.

Huron Institute, Cambridge, Massachusetts, consultation on studies of stakeholder-based evaluation.

IDEAS, Nederland, Colorado, consultation on evaluation of Foxfire type literacy programs for drop-out youth.

J. Paul Getty Trust, Los Angeles, advisory committee on case studies of school districts exemplary in the teaching of the arts.

Educational Statistics and Evaluation laboratory, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, advisory services on mandated testing and state assessment programs.

National Deaf Education Institute, Rochester, New York, consultation on evaluation of educational services for students with limited hearing.

North Central Educational Research Laboratory, Elmhurst, IL, member of the evaluation advisory committee.

National Collegiate Athletic Association, Mission, Kansas, member of the Research Committee, an advisory body for NCAA research.

Michigan Partnership, consultation on evaluation, one day.

Educational Testing Service, Research Advisory Committee.

St. Louis Art Museum, external evaluator, teacher training program.

Augsberg College, Minneapolis, external evaluator of FIPSE sponsored on-campus project entitled "Revision of lower division mathematics sequences for science and math majors.

Brooklyn College, external evaluator to National Endowment for the Humanities project for developing collaboration between the liberal arts and education faculties in the training of teaching.

Fordham University, National Center for Social Work and Education Collaboration, Evaluation Advisory Group.

University of California, Irvine, Center for Collaborative Research in Education.

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