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The Community Needs Assessment Workbook

Rodney A. Wambeam

Publication Date - 01 July 2015

ISBN: 9780190615505

243 pages
6 x 9 inches

In Stock


In planning community and social services, perceptions of need come from many sources-from the local news to political interest groups-but the first step in conducting efficient and effective community interventions is to look beyond perceptions and identify the actual needs based on available evidence. Creating a comprehensive needs assessment is essential for securing funding and designing programs in governmental agencies and nonprofit organizations. This workbook helps community groups, social service organizations, and government agencies collect, analyze, prioritize, and present local data in a way that will ensure that a community's needs are understood and met.

Employing a learn-by-doing approach, the book walks readers through the actual steps of creating a comprehensive needs assessment. The workbook offers thorough background information and provides step-by-step activities to address the entire process beginning with the planning stage, followed by data collection and analysis, and concluding with preparing your report and implementing findings. Whether in a classroom setting or in the workplace, this is the book that practitioners will use throughout their entire careers.


  • text is formatted as a workbook designed around tasks, worksheets, and tools to guide the reader through the process of creating an actual needs assessment
  • the website www.rodneywambeam.com accompanies the book and has downloadable copies of all the worksheets included so that readers can print and use them for future projects
  • demonstrations provide real-world examples of communities and organizations at every step of the process
  • covers important topics frequently left out of needs assessment texts including survey research, and using completed assessment reports for making decisions, and writing grant proposals

About the Author(s)

Rodney A. Wambeam (PhD, University of Nebraska)is a senior research scientist at the Wyoming Survey and Analysis Center and adjunct professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Wyoming. He has served as health and human services advisor to the governor of Nebraska, on numerous councils and coalitions, and as technical assistance provider to states and communities throughout America.

Table of Contents

    Step 1: Planning Your Needs Assessment
    1 Introduction
    2 Laying the Foundation
    Step 2: Collecting and Analyzing Data
    3 Types of Data
    4 Collecting Qualitative Data
    5 Collecting Quantitative Data
    6 Analyzing Qualitative Data
    7 Analyzing Quantitative Data
    Step 3: Finalizing and Using Your Needs Assessment
    8 Answering Research Questions and Setting Priorities
    9 Writing the Technical Report
    10 Using a Comprehensive Needs Assessment

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