An Expanded Simple Logic Model

Let's put a bit more detail on our logic model. In the following graphic, we see that outputs include activities and participation, and we also see that outcomes are divided into short-, medium-, and long-term results.

Logic model with inputs (program investments), outputs (activities and participation), and outcomes/impacts (short, medium, and long term)
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As you move through the sections of this module, you'll become increasingly familiar with this terminology.

  • Inputs are the resources invested that allow us to achieve the desired outputs.

  • Outputs are activities conducted or products created that reach targeted participants/populations. Outputs lead to outcomes.

  • Outcomes are changes or benefits for individuals, families, groups, businesses, organizations, and communities. Outcomes occur along a path from shorter-term achievements to longer-term achievements (impact). Outcomes help us answer:
  "Don't miss it" icon "So what... what difference are we making?"

In this module, we use impact to mean the final, or ultimate result – the long-term outcome. As such, impact is synonymous with your long-term goal. Commonly, however, the terms outcome and impact are used interchangeably. The term impact in “communicating impact”, “impact reports”, or “impact statements” refers to any outcomes that answer the “so what? ” question. It is the difference your programs are making in peoples lives.

There may be slight variations in the logic model formats of different organizations and practitioners. A popular version places outputs after activities in the continuum.

The important thing is to depict all the logical connections in the context of an originating situation…to “make implicit understandings explicit.” (McLaughlin and Jordan, 1999)