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Division of Adolescent and School Health — Logic Model Magic Tutorial
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Types of Logic Models

Program Logic Model and Nested Logic Model

Let’s look at two different types of logic models: program logic models and nested logic models.

Program Logic Models

Maria’s logic model provides an overview of her five-year program. This type of logic model is referred to as a program logic model and is used to describe and depict the highlights of a program. Generally speaking, logic models should fit on one page. The following diagram illustrates a program logic model:

Illustration of CDC’s approved program logic model template showing six connected boxes in a row from left to right.

Nested Logic Models

A program logic model does not provide a great deal of detail about a specific strategy or group of strategies. For that level of detail, you can develop a separate nested logic model that expands upon specific strategies (specifically a portion of a larger program logic model). The following diagram illustrates a nested logic model:

Illustration of CDC’s approved logic model template.  The illustration shows a logic model template (one set of six connected boxes in a row from left to right) representing the program logic model, with an additional logic model template (another set of six connected boxes in a row from left to right) representing a more detailed nested logic model for just one group of strategies (professional development) from the larger program logic model.

The nested logic model captures more of the details for a particular program strategy (or group of strategies) pulled from the program logic model. In this illustration, professional development strategies are expanded upon in the nested logic model.

A good way to think of a nested logic model is to think of it not as a different model, but rather as a way of focusing in on a particular program strategy (or group of strategies) within a larger program logic model. Just as “zooming in” on a computerized map site allows you to see the area in more detail, a nested logic model can provide you with more detailed information on specific program strategies.

You may wish to construct a nested logic model when

  • You want to provide more detail about a particular strategy or group of strategies
  • You have identified a new program strategy or modified an existing one
  • You want to highlight a program strategy for marketing purposes
  • New staff members have recently been assigned to a strategy

Let's look at an example to further explain the concept of nested logic models.

Program Logic Model

Directions
Zoom in on the Strategies/Activities section of this logic model by clicking on the green arrow. [ Click here to view ]

[Zoom-in #1]

[This animation illustrates the relationship between a program-level logic model and a nested logic model by singling out specific strategies or groups of strategies in the program-level logic model which could be given their own, nested logic models showing more detail. For example, a nested logic model could be created expanding on the planned professional development strategies in a program logic model.]

[Zoom-in #2]

[This animation illustrates how specific strategies or groups of strategies in a program-level logic model could be presented in more detail in a nested logic model. In addition to the strategies, this nested logic model would also show the associated activities for each strategy. More than one nested logic model can be used to describe a program.]

Example:
Example Logic Model [pdf 2.5M]

 

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