SOAR Evaluation & Policy Center

What is SOAR?

The Southwest Outreach Academic Research (SOAR) Evaluation & Policy Center are evaluators for grants, internal research, and external organizations in education, healthcare, and the social sciences. We are currently serving as the evaluator for grants and projects that are funded through the National Science Foundation, the United States Department of Agriculture, the New Mexico Public Education Department, and others.

We also work with other groups outside of the University, including ECHO for Education, the Bridge of Southern New Mexico, the Asombro Institute, Families and Youth, Inc., and several outreach groups within NMSU under the Institute for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Education. SOAR is led by the Director, Dr. Rachel Boren, with one senior project specialist and graduate and undergraduate student research assistants.

What can we do for you?

Our research and evaluation services include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Writing the evaluation plan for grant applications and serving as the evaluator if funded
    • Plans are tailored to your project budget, outcomes, and funding agency
  • Survey and assessment design
    • Developing content tests and surveys for children and adults in an array of areas and topics
  • Qualitative data collection, such as interviews and focus groups
    • Planning and conducting one on one interviews or more structured focus groups with multiple participants
  • Analysis of quantitative and qualitative data
    • Simple to more advanced statistical analyses and qualitative coding and theme analysis
  • Writing reports for different audiences, including funders, program leadership, and conferences 
    • Tailored reports and summaries formatted to your needs with engaging and informative visuals
  • Assist with the Institutional Review Board (IRB) process for your project:
    • Consulting about responses to the application questions, drafting consent forms, and discussing other needs you’ll have for your application to be approved

Please contact us to talk more about how we can help your specific project needs! Email Dr. Rachel Boren: rboren@nmsu.edu (quickest way to get in touch) or call 575-646-6477.