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A Guide to Using Focus Groups for Assessment

A Virtual Workshop

Presented by:

Dr. Tisha M. Paredes

Weave Knowledge Center Expert

Date: Tuesday, October 3rd

Time: 2-4pm ET/11am-12pm PT

Enrollment Information:

To maximize interactions, seating is limited to 15 participants.


  • $225
  • $175: Weave Members

Who Should Attend?

  • Academic and student affairs professionals and leader
  • Faculty
  • Teaching and learning professionals


  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced


When we think about assessment tools, we often think of surveys, rubrics, or tests - the more traditional tools. But what about focus groups, which can often give insight into a topic. 

The goal of this workshop is to present a 6-step model for conducting focus groups to capture valuable information about academic programs, student services and success, as well as respond to state and accreditation demands for information about student employment. We will break down the process of conducting a focus group and discuss all the steps required to develop reliable and valid focus groups. Participants will learn how to develop and conduct their own focus group in a rigorous and relevant manner, as well as how to analyze the data.

Participant Outcomes:

  • Design a focus group project;
  • Develop goals and write research questions;
  • Determine when focus groups are appropriate or inappropriate;
  • Analyze focus group data and draft an accurate report.

About the Instructor:

Dr. Tisha M. Paredes

Knowledge Center Expert, Weave

Author, Speaker, Consultant

Until June 2021, Dr. Tisha M. Paredes was the Assistant Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness & Assessment at Old Dominion University. Prior to accepting this position in 2015, she served as the office’s Research Associate, Senior Research Associate, and Director of Assessment. Tisha helped to promote institutional effectiveness activities at all levels of the University. She has presented workshops and consulted on topics including institutional effectiveness, academic and administrative assessment, general education assessment, QEP assessment, and SACSCOC compliance. She has served on several on and off-site accreditation committees as a reviewer and led a team of reviewers. Her book, Using Focus Groups to Listen, Learn, and Lead in Higher Education, was published in summer 2018. Tisha stepped away from ODU to focus on consulting with other institutions. She also works at Weave and provides workshops, webinars, and other professional development activities for assessment professionals. She is currently serving a 3-year term on the Fulbright Specialist roster, allowing her to support assessment and accreditation activities at international institutions.