A theory‐driven approach to the evaluation of professional training in alcohol abuse Academic Article uri icon


  • This paper begins by observing that, to date, evaluations of brief training courses in alcohol abuse for non-specialist professionals indicate that they have little influence on attitudes and behaviour. The reasons why this is so have not been studied in detail, and such training courses continue to be widely used despite their minimal effects. It is argued that the failure of this field of inquiry to develop beyond this point is due to the fact that, with only a very few exceptions, it has not been informed by theoretical concerns. The research in this area is discussed in terms of the types of models tested and the research designs typically used in evaluations. This is followed by a detailed description of the 'theory driven approach' to evaluation. It is proposed that the use of such an approach by those concerned with the development and evaluation of training in alcohol abuse for non-specialists would increase the likelihood of identifying the real effects of such programmes and the processes that mediate their successful implementation. This would result in a more purposeful use of educators' and evaluators' energies and skills.

author list (cited authors)

  • GORMAN, D. M.

citation count

  • 15

publication date

  • February 1993