New Insights for Tracking and Reporting Milestones


  • Jessica Renger Kaiser Permanente
  • Ralph Renger Just Evaluation Services LLC
  • Richard N. Van Eck University of North Dakota
  • Marc D. Basson University of North Dakota
  • Jirina Renger Walden University



Milestones, monitoring, evaluation standards


Despite being a common evaluation metric, milestones are poorly defined, and guidance for their use is underdeveloped in the evaluation literature. This practice note attempts to address this oversight by providing evaluation-specific guidance for tracking and reporting milestones. Using a case study, we share our initial approach to tracking and reporting milestones, as well as how critical reflection guided by the evaluation standards provided us with key insights that allowed us to make improvements to our initial process. We hope this practice note acts as a springboard for elevating the critical dialogue surrounding milestones in the evaluation literature.

Author Biographies

Jessica Renger, Kaiser Permanente

Jessica Renger, MA, works as an evaluator in the National Office of Community Health for Kaiser Permanente and is an advanced PhD student and Adjunct Professor in the Evaluation and Applied Research Methods program at Claremont Graduate University. She specializes in theory driven program evaluation, systems thinking, effective interpersonal communication, and health promotion.

Ralph Renger, Just Evaluation Services LLC

Ralph Renger, PhD, was a tenured professor at the University of Arizona and the University of North Dakota where he taught graduate-level program and system evaluation. He has over 80 peer-reviewed publications focused primarily on bridging theory to practice. He is now an independent consultant focused mainly on evaluating complex interventions operating and functioning as systems. His book on the same topic is scheduled to be released in the Fall of 2022.

Richard N. Van Eck, University of North Dakota

Richard N. Van Eck, PhD, is the founding Dr. David and Lola Rognlie Monson Endowed Chair in Medical Education and Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences. He has served as Co-PI, evaluator, game design consultant, and/or advisory board member for 12 grants from the American Medical Association, NSF, DoE, HRSA, and DARPA and has written and co-authored two book chapters on evaluation, including “Evaluating Coaching Programs” and “A tale of inherent integration: Process methodology in support of a shared purpose to investigate videogame programming in libraries,” an invited article for a special issue on methodology in Research in the Schools, and four articles on evaluation of the DaCCoTA Center for Translational Research.

Marc D. Basson, University of North Dakota

Marc Basson, MD, PhD, is Senior Associate Dean for Medicine and Research and Professor of Surgery, Biomedical Sciences, and Pathology at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences as well as Principal Investigator for the DaCCoTA Center for Clinical and Translational Research.

Jirina Renger, Walden University

Jirina Renger, DrPH, is a graduate from University of Arizona, College of Public Health. She currently serves as a core faculty member in the PhD Public Health program in the College of Health Sciences and Public Policy at Walden University. Her area of specialization is Theory-Driven Evaluation and Program Theory Reconstruction.






Practice Note- English