Monitoring is the systematic and routine collection of data during project implementation for the purpose of establishing whether an intervention is moving towards the set objectives or project goals. In this case, data is collected throughout the life cycle of the project. The data collection tools are usually embedded into the project activities in order to ensure that the process is seamless. There are several types of monitoring in M&E and they include process monitoring, technical monitoring, assumption monitoring, financial monitoring and impact monitoring.

Process monitoring/ physical progress monitoring

In process monitoring, routine data is collected and analyzed in order to establish whether the project tasks and activities are leading towards the intended project results. It authenticates the progress of the project towards the intended results. This kind of monitoring measures the inputs, activities and outputs. In other words, process monitoring answers the questions “what has been done so far, where, when and how has it been done?” Most of the data collected during project implementation usually serves this kind of monitoring.

Technical monitoring

Technical monitoring involves assessing the strategy that is being used in project implementation to establish whether it is achieving the required results. It involves the technical aspects of the project such as the activities to be conducted. In a safe water project for example, physical progress monitoring may show that there is little or no uptake of chlorination as a water treatment strategy. Technical monitoring may establish that this could be a result of installing chlorine dispensers at the water source and women are too time constrained that they have no time to line up to get chlorine from the dispensers. This may prompt a change of strategy where the project might opt for household distribution of bottled chlorine.

Assumption monitoring

Any project has its working assumptions which have to be clearly outlined in the project log frame. These assumptions are those factors which might determine project success or failure, but which the project has no control over. Assumption monitoring involves measuring these factors which are external to the project. It is important to carry out assumption monitoring as it may help to explain success or failure of a project1. For example, a project that was promoting the use of contraceptives may realize that uptake of use of contraceptives has dropped. The drop in use of the contraceptive could however, be attributed to increased taxation on the importation of contraceptives in the country which makes them more expensive, rather than on project failure.

Financial Monitoring

Just like the name suggests, financial monitoring simply refers to monitoring project/ program expenditure and comparing them with the budgets prepared at the planning stage. The use of funds at the disposal of a program/project is crucial for ensuring there are no excesses or wastages. Financial monitoring is also important for accountability and reporting purposes, as well as for measuring financial efficiency (the maximization of outputs with minimal inputs).

Impact Monitoring

Impact monitoring is a type of monitoring which continually assesses the impact of project activities to the target population. Indeed, impacts are usually the long term effects of a project. However, for projects with a long life span or programs (programs have no defined timelines) there emerges a need for measuring impact change in order show whether the general conditions of the intended beneficiaries are improving or otherwise2. In this case, the manager monitors impact through the pre-determined set of impact indicators. Monitoring both the positive and negative impacts, intended and un-intended impacts of the project/program becomes imperative. For example, in a Water and Sanitation program, there may be a need to monitor the change in Under 5 Mortality in the program area over time. In this case, rather than being identified as an impact evaluation, this would be identified as impact monitoring.


1. Water Affairs and Forestry Department, Republic of South Africa. Project Monitoring and Evaluation. 2005

2. Dannish Demming Group. Impact Monitoring: An Introduction. 2012



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  1. Mugabo Evalister

    Monitoring it is a nice tool for our life without monitoring there is life at all, life is monitoring- Bishop Mugabo Lutheran Church of Rwanda

  2. Jemimah

    Thanks for the knowledge, found it insightful. But do we have anything like results, compliance, context, beneficiary and organisational monitoring?
    Thank You.

  3. Dominic Bona

    thanks very much

  4. Well tackled. It gives a full insight of how all the five types of monitoring are important. !

  5. You have put this thoughtfully and nicely. Thank you.
    Whereas i appreciate recent focus on impact monitoring, i suggest outcome monitoring be added to this list, but add where there could be potential challenges on the program team to differentiate both outcome and impact monitoring, across their methods, tools, interpretation, and communication of results.

  6. In dis cosmos ever thing is possible but depends on how to grab it

  7. Yohannes B. Desta

    Appreciate the explanation of technical terms given here; that I usually stuck with mixed use.

  8. JANE

    you help thousands of people,God bless you.

  9. musiitwa paul

    yo just the real we need

  10. mehari

    very important thanks

  11. Hadi

    found it very insightful, better to include output and outcome monitoring

  12. sokkea sin

    the best lesson which I have been
    finding so long time

  13. ramanath roy

    very good idea.

  14. MPBona

    you help us to increase skills.may GOD bless you

  15. Francis Azumah

    This information has been extremely useful to me as a postgraduate student of M& E. I intend to make use of this page regularly so that I will not miss anything.

  16. Loge albina loge

    Send me more documents for M&E via the above email

  17. Waaaw amazing thus realy nice i got the point thanks

  18. Justine

    Well done tailored well for students or workers of M&E.


  20. Alfredson Vankan

    My comments here is that I ready interested in this field and this it is the field of making money and I has the passion for it so if I can get degree in this field I will be very glad.

  21. very interested,and well explained question in respect of monitoring and evaluation,types.etc.

  22. Alfredson NK vankan

    Hello miss my name is Alfredson NK vankan I am from Africa Liberia l am interested in this course and it is my major that I am studying at David G. Barshell University College reading monitoring and evaluation as major while reading management as minor so I want to please tell me more about this course because it is my interest and I want it to be part of my entire life.

  23. Mahlons N. Abba

    This work is really interesting and impacting, I learned a lot, keep educating, is rewarding. Mahlons N. Abba from Africa Nigeria

  24. Many thanks for your presentation on the types of Monitoring. However, I am a bit concerned about the issue of impact monitoring. It seems a bit contradictory since we consider Evaluation to be concerned with outcome and impact. What if we consider impact monitoring as Beneficiary Contact Monitoring (BCM) which in other words could be monitoring the new happenings in impact? I am just a bit uncomfortable with the name impact monitoring. Thanks so much.

  25. juliet

    Thanks a lot for this great lesson it has done me good.

  26. Thanks you very much ,I appreciate the explanation terms given here, thanks in advance

  27. Ocean of knowledge in a nutshell. Its so identic.and useful..thanksssssss

  28. Alfredson Nk Vankan

    Firstly let me say I am interested in this field reason is that I am presently reading monitoring and evaluation as major and procurement as minor at the Barshell university college here in Liberia. So please I want to know more about monitoring and evaluation.

  29. wazir Amarkhil

    It’s so important information for every one, every one must be learned these information and take benefit in practical work, if we not monitoring in our daily activities it means nothing is right.

  30. Feda Mohammad

    It was great and useful for me.

  31. Alfredson Nk. Vankan

    Dear Sir,
    It is my pleasure to have u inform that I am a student of Barshell unversity college reading monitoring and evaluation as major while sociology minor, so please if have to receive my email I want u please help with more details about this couse because it my dream in life along with sociolog. I also take this time to tell u thanks so much for this wonderful opportunity and job u had done.

  32. Hassan Moalim Ibrahim

    thank you so much this is very important research, and i got benefit for this course reagrding M& E types please keep such useful lessons about this course

  33. Kadir Umar

    It was very nice to know the over all of monitoring in and evaluation detailed.

  34. I like monitoring and evaluation officer

  35. Victor Musonda

    Your information is really helpful. It is clear and easy to understand. Well simplified.

  36. Kasule kassimu

    Hi, hope you are doing well and thanks for the great work.
    I would like you to linelist the elements to monitor and evaluate in a project say a WASH project

  37. I certified with the all types of m&e.
    Thank you very much

  38. Again Gabriel

    I have made this site my reference place to to refresh and get new ideas as well M & E updates.

  39. marlyn

    very explicit and well elaborated. thank you

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