ARCHIVED - Part 3: Analysis and evaluation of forum results

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“I BENEFITED FROM ALL THE ASPECTS OF THE FORUM… THEY WERE COMPLEMENTARY…”
“THE PRESENTATIONS WERE EXCELLENT AND DISCUSSIONS WERE VERY USEFUL.”

DISCUSSION FORUM PARTICIPANTS, OCTOBER 26, TORONTO.

At the end of the forum discussions, participants were given evaluation forms to assess their level of satisfaction and get their comments, which will help OCOL improve future forums it plans to hold on the same topic. An analysis of the 26 completed forms shows that the forum was a success in several regards.

Objectives and results

Participants indicated that the discussion forum had achieved its objectives and met their expectations. They appreciated this discussion forum on important issues affecting Canada today. They said that this opportunity to meet and share their knowledge and experiences was positive. They hope that forum results and suggestions will be taken into consideration by the appropriate authorities. However, some did express some scepticism about how these results would be used.

Methods used

Overall, the methods used to achieve the expected outcomes were deemed to be very appropriate; discussions were effective and produced very tangible results.

“METHODS USED ARE VERY EFFECTIVE. PARTICIPATION OF ALL GROUP MEMBERS HIGHLIGHTED THE COMPLEXITY OF THE ISSUES.”

Participants appreciated the pre-forum questionnaire and the issue paper, which helped them to better prepare for the discussions. Forum facilitation was rated as excellent.

It was mentioned that, although they were relevant, more specific questions would have helped participants go deeper into discussions during the workshops. Some said that they could not develop their ideas further because of complexity of the questions and the allocated time. Some participants gave an “average” rating to the variety and effectiveness of the techniques used.

“WE NEED A VARIETY OF TECHNIQUES TO STIMULATE DISCUSSION AND GIVE EVERYONE ENOUGHT TIME TO SHARE IDEAS.”

“THE FACILITATORS DID AN EXCELLENT JOB IN THE BREAKOUT ROOM AT KEEPING THE DISCUSSION ON TRACK.”

The number and profile of participants were considered to be appropriate. Dividing participants into small discussion groups ahead of time was appreciated. However, some participants questioned why the same groups were kept for both workshops, while others thought this was the most efficient method for the workshops.

Several participants suggested that invitations should be extended to representatives of other ethnocultural groups, chambers of commerce, professional associations and educational institutions facing the challenges of linguistic duality. They also suggested inviting observers from Citizenship and Immigration Canada and Foreign Affairs Canada, members of the legal system and the police, in addition to making an effort to target young people or individuals who can share their experiences with linguistic duality and cultural diversity. A comment was made to the effect that there were too many government representatives.

All forum aspects were assessed as being beneficial, particularly discussions on the changes occurring in society. The forum gave a number of participants the opportunity to share and develop their viewpoints and learn from other people’s experiences. A number of participants also mentioned the relevance and the high quality of the presentations by the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson and Mr. Fraser, and appreciated Ms. Ortega’s talk.

Material and logistical aspects: An analysis of the evaluation forms showed a very high level of satisfaction with the forum’s materials and logistics. Those related to how the activities were carried out, the quality of the facilities and the visual tools received a high rating.

In terms of improvements to be made for future forums, several recommendations were made:

  • Set a time limit for individual statements to encourage participants to be direct and concise.

  • Rearrange the groups in the second workshop, to give participants the opportunity to discuss with many different people. However, according to other participants, this could affect group dynamics.

  • Clarify questions to prevent repetition during workshop discussions.

  • Extend invitations to other players in government, the private sector and civil society, particularly ethnocultural communities.

Other comments

Thank you for the opportunity to participate. Good job!

Such discussions are very important and bring us together.

Excellent input by the Commissioner and his staff. Staff had a helpful attitude.

Hold the forum on the weekend to ensure greater participation by the communities.

More analysis and time should be devoted to this discussion.

I hope that the Government of Canada and eventually private corporations will adopt linguistic duality and will encourage Canadians of any ages to adopt bilingualism.



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