spider_diagram.jpgSpider Diagrams

The Spider diagram method is a "quick and dirty" way to get a useful snap shot about how participant's evaluate a workshop or generally the achievement of project objectives. Use it along with interviews and if necessary in addition to a more formal survey. It allows to give participants an immediate visual impression of the group's thinking.

When to use

  • At face-to-face meeting
  • Evaluation of a workshop
  • Evaluation of achievement of objectives

How to use

  • Draw a circle on a flipchart paper
  • For each item to evaluate draw a line from the center to the circle.
  • Write the item on the intersection between the line and the circle.
  • Draw spider lines from the inside to the outside of the circle (see photo).
  • Gather the participants around the flipchart.
  • Ask them to put one dot for each item: If highly ranked the dot should be close top the center; if poorly ranked the dot should be close to the circle.
  • Present and discuss the result with the group.

You can also do Spider Diagrams on the floor by drawing the circle and lines with tape:
  • Gather the participants around the floor.
  • Stand in the center and say one by one the items to evaluate
  • Ask the group to stand nearby the center if they want to rank the item as achieved and to stand nearby the circle if they want to rank the item as less or not achieved.


Tips and Lessons Learnt

  • Don't try to formalize the spider diagram by attributing numbers afterwards. Use surveys if you need formal evaluation.
  • Take pictures of the flipchart to share afterwards and with wider audiences.

Examples & Stories

  • Spider Diagrams: CGIAR Strategic Communications Workshop Evaluation

Who can tell me more?

  • Simone Staiger-Rivas (s.staiger [at] cgiar.org)

Related Methods / Tools / Practices


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(URLs, photos, podcasts)


Evaluation, reflection, reflective_practices

Photo or image credits

Simone Staiger-Rivas

Page Authors

Simone Staiger-Rivas: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3454/3388810283_56cc9af5bd_m.jpg