Scaling is a simple, highly visual and easily understood way of measuring and evaluating anything. Look around and you will see scaling being used in countless ways every day. A wall of a hospital might show a big temperature gauge to measure how fundraising is going for new equipment, a sign alerting people to bush fire conditions might show an arrow pointing to somewhere on an arc, a project management system might show a percentage of completion, and every student knows only too well the various scales used to measure success in an exam or course.
In The Strengths Approach by Wayne McCashen, scaling is included as a strengths-based tool.
A typical scaling question goes like this:
- On a scale between one and ten, with one being when things are at their worst and ten being when things are at their best, where are things now?
Scaling is an easily accessible means of helping people measure how things are going over time. It helps make comparisons between when things are at their best, when they are at their worst and when they are somewhere in between. It helps people to identify exceptions because anything that is happening when things are above the number one exposes skills and strengths they are using when the problem does not have as much control as it otherwise can.
Typically, scaling questions include:
- What’s happening when things are above one? What are you doing then?
- Are there times when things are at three or four? What’s different then? What are you doing?
- Are there times when things have been at ten? What’s different then?
These kinds of scaling questions can shed light on possible ways forward. They help identify strengths and exceptions, giving clues about what might be done differently. Scaling can also be used to assist people to develop a concrete picture of the future:
- If things were as high as ten what would be happening?
- What would need to happen for things to stay above five?
- What have you tried before when things were above five?
(Extract from The Strengths Approach (second edition) by Wayne McCashen, p. 132, St Luke’s Innovative Resources, 2017)
As part of our progress towards providing more digital applications, Innovative Resources has developed a web-based app for measuring change and noticing progress. Comprising ten interactive scaling masters especially for those who work with others in a supportive or therapeutic way, this is a great tool for having conversations about how something or someone is going—a project, a job, a timeline, a community event, a team, a family, a person’s energy levels and wellbeing—or anything else it is helpful to measure or evaluate.
What scaling masters are in the web-based app?
The ten visual metaphors or ‘scales’ in The Scaling Kit web-based app are: • Balance • Circle • Ladder • Pathway • Pendulum • Rating Wheel • Sun Up/Sun Down • Thermometer • Ups and Downs • Water Tank.
Once you purchase the app you can access it online at any time via a weblink.
Visit our product page for more details.