School of Health in Social Science

Step 2: Create a logic model

Mapping the change process, showing how what you deliver will lead to specific outcomes

There is no point developing programmes and engaging materials that get great initial feedback from participants, and self-reported intention to make better choices, that then do not translate to a change in their behaviour when they get back into their 'real lives'


Having described the intervention and established who it is targeting, what it involves, and the specific aims and anticipated outcomes, the next step is to identify how and why the intervention works, through examining:

(a)    the mechansims of change - how each aspect of the intervention leads to specific outcomes, and

(b)   the factors that might influence how well the intervention works – for example, does the context or style of delivery matter?

A logic model is a simple way of mapping out everything that will take place in an intervention and the specific improvements that it has been designed to achieve. The intervention may have been developed based on a theory of behavioural change where the mechanisms are specified, but if not, the Evidence Based Practice Unit (EBPU) and Evaluation Support Scotland provide useful step-by-step guides and interactive templates to help create a logic model and map out change processes:

As the EPBU guide points out, it is good practice to consider the academic literature when determining likely mechanisms.

The list below shows the main changes the animal welfare education professionals in our study would like to see in children and young people as a result of participating in one of their interventions. There may also be other outcomes that would need to be included in the logic model.

  1. Improved knowledge and understanding of animal welfare needs and issues.
  2. Greater recognition of animal sentience.
  3. Improved skills in relation to interpreting animal behavioural signals and responding appropriately, handling animals correctly (fewer intrusive/forceful/rough handling behaviours), recognising poor welfare and cruelty, and knowing how to behave safely around animals.
  4. Improved empathy and compassion towards animals.
  5. Improved empathy towards others generally (improvement in pro-social behaviours).
  6. Greater recognition of responsibility and an appreciation of their own impact on animals – increased self-awareness & self-reflection, and feeling more empowered to take action.
  7. Being more respectful of, and improved attitudes towards, animals.
  8. Sustained behavioural change and reduced incidence of children harming animals or being harmed by animals.

Below is an example of a basic logic model used for an animal welfare education intervention (adapted from Hawkins et al., 2019), and a more comprehensive model will be provided in our worked example.

A diagram showing the stages involved in developing a logic model