Implementation Glossary



Adherence The extent to which practitioners implement a program or practice as prescribed by its developer and avoid methods or strategies known to be ineffective.


A relationship-based process used to support facilitator use of a program or practice to achieve the desired or intended outcomes.  Personal observation, instruction, and feedback or other forms of training on the job.
Core Components The essential elements of an evidence-based program that contribute to its purported effects.
Evidence-Based Program A program or practice that has undergone rigorous scientific evaluation to demonstrate its effects.
Exploration The first stage of implementation during which stakeholders assess needs, identify a program or practice to address the needs, create support for the program or practice, and decide to advance the change effort.

Feedback Loop

A communication process used to collect input, analyze data, and address problems during the implementation process.  Feedback loops are established to facilitate communication among the Implementation Team, Site Administration, and facilitators.


Fidelity of Implementation

The degree to which specified procedures, programs, or practices are implemented as intended by the developers of the program or practice to achieve the expected results or benefits.

Full Implementation

The fourth stage in the implementation process.  At this stage, most facilitators deliver a new program or set of practices with fidelity and are achieving the expected outcomes.


The process of putting to use or integrating an evidence-based program in a delivery setting.

Implementation Site

The location (school, community center, etc.) where a program or practice is implemented.

Implementation Team

A leadership team formed by an organization implementing an EBP.  The Implementation Team manages the implementation efforts and supports the people installing and delivering the new program or practice.  The Implementation Team maintains regular communication with leadership regarding problems, successes, and necessary resources during the various phases of the implementation and its expansion.

Improvement Cycle

The framework used by the Implementation Team to assess current challenges, find solutions, and build upon strengths to increase the likelihood that a new program or practice is implemented with fidelity and is sustained.


Organizational structures, including administration, policies, procedures, and finance, necessary for the operation of programs and services.

Initial Implementation

The third stage of implementation.  The Initial Implementation stage encompasses the steps in which the new practices are first being put to use.  Technical assistance and coaching are deployed to monitor and address challenges as they emerge.  Data are used to assess the quality of implementation and to quickly identify problems and make decisions for improvement before the Full Implementation phase begins.

Installation: Building System Capacity

The second stage of implementation.  Building system capacity and resources to adopt a new program or practice.  At this stage, site selection and implementation team assembly, communication and feedback loop assembly, training and technical assistance processes, and evaluation methods are established and activated.

Process Outcomes

An assessment of how closely facilitators delivered the program or practice to the model originally designed by the developer.  Process Outcomes are measured through Fidelity measures including Teacher Implementation Checklists and Classroom Observation forms.

Program Drift

Variations in the delivery of an evidence based program from the intent or design of the Fidelity Model.  Program drift can impede the achievement of the overall goals and effectiveness of an EBP as well as sustainability. 


 A stakeholder is anyone who can affect or is affected by an organization, strategy, or project.  Stakeholders  can include parents, facilitators, students, staff, and administrators.

Student Outcomes

 Results of behavior checklists, surveys, or knowledge tests administered to assess student learning and implementation effectiveness.