Monitoring Glossary
Overview
This glossary article includes terms which are typically used in the area of monitoring and evaluation (M&E). It is not exhaustive.
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Glossary
Term 
Definition 
Absolute poverty line 
Absolute poverty line is set as an absolute level below which consumption is considered to be too low to meet the minimum welfare level acceptable. Direct Calorie Intake Method, FoodEnergy Method, and Cost of Basic Needs Method could be obtained to set absolute poverty line. 
Categorical Data 
A set of data is said to be categorical if the values or observations belonging to it can be sorted according to category. Each value is chosen from a set of nonoverlapping categories. 
Cluster Sampling 
Cluster sampling is a sampling technique where the entire population is divided into groups, or clusters and a random sample of these clusters are selected. Cluster sampling is typically used when the researcher cannot get a complete list of the members of a population they wish to study but can get a complete list of groups or 'clusters' of the population. 
Confidence Limits 
Confidence limits are the lower and upper boundaries / values of a confidence interval, that is, the values which define the range of a confidence interval. 
Estimate 
An estimate is an indication of the value of an unknown quantity based on observed data. 
Experimental 
The plan of an experiment, including selection of subjects, order of administration of the experimental treatment, the kind of treatment, the procedures by which it is administered, and the recording of the data (with special reference to the particular statistical analyses to be performed. 
Extrapolation 
Extrapolation is when the value of a variable is estimated at times which have not yet been observed. 
Focus Group Discussion 
A qualitative method to obtain indepth information on concepts and perceptions about a certain topic through spontaneous group discussion of approximately 6–12 persons, guided by a facilitator. 
Independent Sampling 
Independent samples are those samples selected from the same population, or different populations, which have no effect on one another. That is, no correlation exists between the samples. 
Interval Scale 
An interval scale is a scale of measurement where the distance between any two adjacents units of measurement (or 'intervals') is the same but the zero point is arbitrary. 
Logical Framework (Logframe) 
Management tool used to improve the design of interventions, most often at the project level. It involves identifying strategic elements (inputs, outputs, outcomes, impact) and their causal relationships, indicators, and the assumptions or risks that may influence success and failure. It thus facilitates planning, execution and evaluation of a development intervention. 
Median 
The median is the value halfway through the ordered data set, below and above which there lies an equal number of data values. 
Mode 
The mode is the most frequently occurring value in a set of discrete data. 
(Multiple) Regression Analysis 
In statistics, regression analysis includes any techniques for modeling and analyzing several variables, when the focus is on the relationship between a dependent variable and one or more independent variables. 
Percentile 
Percentiles are values that divide a sample of data into one hundred groups containing (as far as possible) equal numbers of observations. 
Population 
A population is any entire collection of people, animals, plants or things from which we may collect data. It is the entire group we are interested in, which we wish to describe or draw conclusions about. 
Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) 
A method of measuring the relative purchasing power of different countries' currencies over the same types of goods and services. Because goods and services may cost more in one country than in another, PPP allows us to make more accurate comparisons of standards of living across countries. PPP estimates use price comparisons of comparable items but since not all items can be matched exactly across countries and time, the estimates are not always "robust". 
Quartiles 
Quartiles are values that divide a sample of data into four groups containing (as far as possible) equal numbers of observations. 
QuasiExperimental/ NonExperimental Designs 

Random Sampling 
Randomization, in which the selection into the treatment and control groups is random within some welldefined set of people. In this case there should be no difference (in expectation) between the two groups besides the fact that the treatment group had access to the program (There can still be differences due to sampling error; the larger the size of the treatment and control samples the less the error.). 
Range 
The range of a sample (or a data set) is a measure of the spread or the dispersion of the observations. It is the difference between the largest and the smallest observed value of some quantitative characteristic and is very easy to calculate. 
Representative sampling 
The population is divided into subpopulations (strata) and random samples are taken of each stratum. 
Sample 
A sample is generally selected for study because the population is too large to study in its entirety. The sample should be representative of the general population. This is often best achieved by random sampling. Also, before collecting the sample, it is important that the researcher carefully and completely defines the population, including a description of the members to be included.

Sample mean 
The sample mean is an estimator available for estimating the population mean . It is a measure of location, commonly called the average. 
Selection Bias 

SemiStructured Interview 

Standard Deviation 
Standard deviation is a measure of the spread or dispersion of a set of data. 
Standard error 
Standard error is the standard deviation of the values of a given function of the data (parameter), over all possible samples of the same size. 
Statistic 
A statistic is a quantity that is calculated from a sample of data. It is used to give information about unknown values in the corresponding population. For example, the average of the data in a sample is used to give information about the overall average in the population from which that sample was drawn. 
Time Series 
A time series is a sequence of observations which are ordered in time (or space). If observations are made on some phenomenon throughout time, it is most sensible to display the data in the order in which they arose, particularly since successive observations will probably be dependent. Time series are best displayed in a scatter plot. The series value X is plotted on the vertical axis and time t on the horizontal axis. 
Variance 
The (population) variance of a random variable is a nonnegative number which gives an idea of how widely spread the values of the random variable are likely to be; the larger the variance, the more scattered the observations on average. 
Further Information
References
 Statistics Glossary, V. Easton, J. McColl
 Basic Poverty Measurement & Analysis Course, World Bank Institute
 Semistructured interviews, FAO
 Baker, J. L. (2000): Evaluating the Impact of Development Projects on Poverty. A Handbook for Practioners. The World Bank, Washington, D.C. J. L. (2000): Evaluating the Impact of Development Projects on Poverty. A Handbook for Practioners
 Joint Committee on Standards for Educational Evaluation. (1994). The Program Evaluation Standards, 2nd ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
 OECD (2009): Glossary of Key Terms in Evaluation and Results Based Management. DAC Network on Development Evaluation.