Here are some projects I’ve helped

This page illustrates the wide range of projects that have benefitted from my research.

My early research was mainly full, independent studies.

Now I usually work with projects to support them in their own exploration of perspectives, by making a Contribution or Working Together.


Here are samples of where I’ve made a contribution to a project’s evaluation – plugging a gap in their time or expertise.

Tay Landscape Project: contributions to Final Evaluation
Designed, implemented and analysed the TayLP Final Online Survey. Analysed and reported on: anecdotal evidence collected by TayLP Staff, as well as a range of Feedback Surveys administered during the four years of the Project.
Men in Childcare: prepared evaluation report
I summarised and interpreted data and information provided by the Project, and presented it in an evaluation report to go to funders. This involved working with the Project Manager and  Co-ordinator.
Tay Landscape Project: design of monitoring and evaluation system
I worked with the Scheme Manager and Project Officers to design a monitoring and evaluation framework to provide the basis for reporting to Heritage Lottery Fund. We then set up and tested surveys to obtain feedback from their activities, courses and events; ongoing.
Canal Community Liaison Officer Project: reporting support
I provided advice and support to the Officer to help collect feedback on the achievements of the project which encourages more people to use the  Forth & Clyde Canal in Glasgow and West Dunbartonshire,  and report this feedback in a digestible way to funders, 2012.
Palliative Care@Home Service: help with questionnaire design and Survey Monkey
Provided advice on questionnaire design and use of Survey Monkey to analyse results of The Haven’s Palliative Care@Home Service, 2012.
PLUS’s Circles Of Support scheme: evaluation support
PLUS developed a Circles of Support scheme in Stirlingshire schools to support pupils with disabilities. They had collected feedback from the pupils, parents, teachers and playground assistants. I helped them review the questionnaires, and map out how the information informs the project’s aims and objectives. Later on I helped PLUS review the initial survey data that would form basis of their PALS project.
The Haven: analysis and reporting of data, revision of questionnaire
The Haven had collected feedback from clients and carers who had used their drop-in centre, and also those who had received complementary therapy sessions. I analysed the results and prepared a report which could to boost funding applications. I also made suggestions to improve their questionnaire.

The Haven came back for help to modify & test their questionnaire, so it meets reporting requirements for Big Lottery funding.

For four years I helped them analyse their questionnaire results.

Working Together

For these projects I worked closely with staff throughout the life of the project.

Carradale Visitor & Residents Survey

Developed and ran the print / online survey with the help of the local community for the Carradale Community Trust. Produced a report of results that would help inform community consultations that would in turn feed into the East Kintyre Local Development Plan.

Evaluation of Scottish Biker Magazine project

Set up an online survey to profile motorcyclists and receive their feedback on training, safety and the SBM suite of resources – print/online magazine, Facebook page and website.

Carried out focus groups and phone interviews to explore feedback in more depth.

Provided interim reports to the Project Team so they could implement findings within the year of the Project, and a Final Report to the main funder, Transport Scotland.

Contributions to evaluation of The Haven MS Self Management Service

I Worked with Haven staff to review the MS Self Management Service through:

A Review of MS Self Management Courses 1-3
Questionnaires using a self-rating scale and open questions were completed at the start, end and post training to provide evidence of client and carer achievements.
B Client Carer Survey
Questionnaires returned from 100 Haven MS clients/carers were analysed to evidence benefits of the service.
C Stakeholder Survey
Phone interviews with associated healthcare professionals to find out their views on the MS Service.
D Prepared final evaluation report
A summary and analysis of the preceding surveys and monitoring data for the MS Service, 2012.

Green Action: ongoing evaluation support, and final report
I helped The Waterways Trust Scotland and their partners review progress and achievements of their environmental and tourism volunteer programme based at the Action Outdoors Centre in Falkirk, and then prepared the Final Report.
Scents and Sensitivities II: ongoing evaluation support, and final report
For two years, I assisted the The Waterways Trust Scotland and their partners to collect and review feedback on development of the garden and nature trails, and the associated training of young people in horticulture skills, and prepared the Final Report.
The Deer Commission for Scotland: scoping study
We worked together to develop a methodology and questions to obtain feedback from operators on ‘deer watching’ in Scotland.  I then planned piloting the phone interviews, and the main survey, and analysis of the results.
The Dalriada Project: evaluation advice, ongoing help and final reporting
I provided a mix of advice and hands-on help for four years years of the Project to collect baseline data and  feedback on progress, including setting up a visitor survey, collecting feedback from schools arts projects, testing a podcast and collating end-of-year reviews. At the end of the project in 2010, I conducted surveys with a range of stakeholders as a contribution to the Final Evaluation.

Full Studies - Evaluations

The following evaluations were mainly carried out at the end of the project. Typically, my role was to provide an independent review of achievements, learning and future possibilities.

Evaluation of the Living Well with MS online programme 2018-19, for the MS Society, Scotland, ongoing
An independent evaluation of the online version of the programme using monitoring data collected by the MS Society alongwith phone interview responses from participants, module leaders, MS Nurses and MS Society staff. A particular focus was to compare results of online delivery with the established face-to-face programme. An Interim Report allowed findings to be incorporated into the Programme for the rest of the year. 6
Evaluation of Lothian Self Management Programme, for Action For Sick Children Scotland
An independent evaluation of the Self Management Programme for young people with long term conditions, achieved through analysis of feedback collected by the Project Team, a focus group with young people, and phone interviews with: young people, their parents, healthcare professionals and the Project Officer, in relation to Project outcomes 2016
Engage Renfrewshire: Qualitative Evaluation of Renfrew West Our Place
An independent evaluation of the capacity building support Engage Renfrewshire provided to community projects, achieved through group discussions and phone interviews with project partners, 2015 
Evaluation of the Rural Skills Project
An evaluation of the work-based Rural Skills Course in Highland through: pupil, parent, teacher, employer and stakeholder surveys (mainly online), and in-depth phone consultations with employers and stakeholders. With Rural Insights.
Evaluation of SNH’s Sharing Good Practice (SGP) Programme
A comprehensive evaluation of the programme through: observation of three SGP Events, phone surveys with participants and providers, review of Feedback Forms. Design of a Monitoring and Evaluation System.
Evaluation of the Excellence through Education and Business Links (EEBL) programme
A full independent evaluation of the EEBL Teacher Placement Scheme, starting with a rationalisation of objectives, then analysis of extensive existing data and a survey of teachers and businesses involved. The results were shared at a stakeholder workshop. Details…
More independent evaluations
  • Evaluation of Inverness College’s Vocational Pathways Programme*
  • Evaluation of the HIE Individual Skills Grant Scheme*
  • Evaluation of the pilot New Futures Programme
  • Evaluation of the South of Scotland Childminding Business Development Project
  • Evaluation of the first year of the SCMA Networking & Marketing Project
  • Evaluation of SNH National Nature Reserve Publications^
  • Evaluation of learning from interpretive facilities at six Visitor Attractions^ See report
  • Pilot of Guidelines for Visitor Surveys for NNR managers^
  • Evaluation of a Community Helpline website^
  • Evaluation of the Western Isles Opportunities Programme
  • Evaluation of SCMA Highland Project
  • Evaluation of Young Enterprise in the Western Isles
  • Evaluation of Education Business Partnerships in the Highlands & Islands

* A Rural Insights project
^ A Strathspey Surveys project

Full Studies - Scoping and Feasibility

At the other end of the evaluation cycle, these studies investigate the need for a particular service.

Foxbar Community Consultation, for Engage Renfrewshire, 2016, May Johnstone.
Investigation of the readiness of the community in Foxbar, Paisley to take on more responsibility for running community groups, achieved through 5 group consultations and a print/online survey.

Feasibility Study for the Achany Apprenticeship Scheme, Rural Insights and May Johnstone, 2011, for Scottish Community Foundation.

Scoping Study for Skills for Work Courses in the Health Professions, Rural Insights, Hutt J and May Johnstone, 2007, for Highland Council.

Feasibility Study for an Apprenticeship Support Scheme, Rural Insights and Johnstone M, 2005, for Loch Lomond and the Trossachs Community Partnership.

Investigation of Options for the future status of the SCMA Highland Project, 2001, May Johnstone, for HIE and SCMA Highland.

Investigation of Work-related Childcare needs in Fife, May Johnstone, 1991, for Fife Enterprise.

Market Research for a Women into Management Course, May Johnstone, 1988, for Open College.

Full Studies - Other Research

Visitor Perceptions Survey at Flanders Moss, 2011, for SNH. Observations, interviews,self-completion questionnaires and online survey to inform development of the interpretive facilities.

Skills for Work Case Studies, 2010, for The Highland Council, researched and written for distribution at the Scottish Learning Festival, Sep 2010.

Survey of Construction Industry Views in Argyll and Bute, 2008, for Construction Excellence.

Shetland’s North Isles Skills Audit, Hutt J, Johnstone M, & Strathspey Surveys, 2006, for Highlands and Islands Enterprise.

Investigation of the Barriers Lone Parents face in Accessing Work, Johnstone M and Strathspey Surveys, 2004, for Highland Employer Coalition.

Research into Work Experience for Highland pupils, Rural Insights & May Johnstone, 2005, for Highland Council

Survey of Recreational Use of the Nevis Area, Strathspey Surveys & May Johnstone, 2003, for Highland Council.

Training and Coaching for Research

I provide tailored training or coaching in the following aspects of evaluation.

  • Overview of Evaluation
  • Interview skills
  • Phone interviewing
  • Use of Survey Monkey for online surveys
  • How to prepare a questionnaire
  • How to analyse open-ended questionnaires with Pivot Tables
  • Report writing

If my work resonates for your project, I invite you to a no-obligation 20 minute Free Consult.