Introduction to Monitoring

© UNICEF/NYHQ2012-0697/Romenzi
In Syria, a boy walks by a destroyed armoured personnel carrier, surrounded by rubble, in a town affected by the conflict between rebel and government forces.

Note: Monitoring is a complex process and the core element of the MRM; As there is a lot of information, it is presented as seven sub-modules. To cover all the modules take one full day in itself. The selection for the course content will depend largely on the context and experience of the participant group, and some aspects can be left to follow-up days. Due to the complexity of the material this is divided into 7 sub-modules.
This first module is a very short session to set the scene for the following modules on monitoring.


  • For participants to be aware of the components of monitoring and that this is the core activity of the MRM.
  • To understand the importance for appropriate approaches and to ensure accuracy, objectivity, timeliness and reliability.
  • To provide an introduction to the monitoring sessions that will follow.
Participants MRM Staff
Session Providing information and brief discussion
Time required 30 minutes
Venue requirements Main training room
Equipment Flipchart paper and markers
Resource person(s) 1 person with knowledge of the topic and the monitoring component
of the training
Training materials MRM Field Manual Section F1 "Introduction to monitoring for the MRM" under Monitoring
Documents for participants MRM Guidelines [PDF]
Access to materials Provided to all participants as core materials for the workshop

Session Sequence

The Basics

Explain that monitoring is the core to the MRM and is complex and containing many elements. As such this module is the most complex module and will involve a number or sessions.

Begin to engage the participants on the area of monitoring by involving them from the start of this module.

Brainstorming: Ask participants what they think are the key components for monitoring

You are looking for the key aspects and some of the elements within those. You only need a simple list but it should include some of the following. Ensure that the key elements are included and if not add yourself.

  • Data collection or gathering information
  • Verification
  • Documentation
  • Information management

Ideally also elicit some of the elements within each component. Provide the chart (below & taken from the MRM Field Manual) illustrating the complexities of monitoring. Explain that we will be doing a number of modules that cover the different aspects (refer to the agenda).


Brainstorming: In table groups brainstorm for 5 minutes on each of the following - share the topics among the tables - i.e. only one topic per table.

  1. Who is being monitored?
  2. What is monitored?
  3.  Who does the monitoring?
  4. Roles of different actors (UN Mission, UN agencies, NGOs)

Refer to the MRM manual for full information on the questions asked - trainers should ensure they are familiar with the answers and have considered the local context and implications.

An overview of Monitoring and its components. (Taken from the MRM Field Manual)


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