Course Modules

  • Module One - Your Giving Roadmap

    Welcome to ThinkingGiving, the short course that will empower you to make more thoughtful and effective decisions about your charitable giving – and feel more satisfaction about the difference you are making.

    • Chapter One - Introduction

      (3 min)

    • Chapter Two - Why Generosity Feels Good

      We’ll start by reviewing how our brain reacts to giving and what we can do to feel enduring satisfaction. (3 min)

    • Chapter Three - The mistakes we make

      This video reviews common mis-steps and how to avoid them. (4½ min)

    • Chapter Four - The Benefits of a Giving Strategy

      The seven modules of the course represent seven steps needed to make thoughtful and effective charitable giving decisions, as illustrated by a funnel diagram. (1½ min)

    • Chapter Five - The ThinkingGiving Toolbox

      There are many ways you can make a difference beyond making a financial donation.  This video looks at the five “Ts” – Time, Talent, Treasure, Ties and Tent you can use. (3 min)

  • Module Two - Who is Doing This?

    This section is an overview of charitable giving in the UK – Who are the key players? How does the money flow? What challenges and opportunities lie ahead?

    • Chapter One - The British Third Sector Today

      This chapter provides a landscape scan to give you a sense of the main players, where the money come from, and how it flows. (8½ min)

    • Chapter Two - Tomorrow

      What’s changing? What challenges lie ahead? (6 min)

    • Mythbuster - Administrative Costs

      This video debunks one of the most destructive misconceptions in charitable giving and demonstrates the importance of supporting an organisation’s operating costs. (7 min)

  • Module Three - What Interests You?

    The single most important decision you can make to ensure your gift makes a difference is choosing the right cause and, especially, the right issue area within that cause.

    • Chapter One - Choosing a Cause

      In this chapter, you will choose the cause(s) about which you feel most passionate. (4 min)

    • Chapter Two - Selecting an Issue Area

      To better select the issue on which you should focus within your chosen cause, you will learn about three simple tests to determine where you can make the most difference. (7 min)

  • Module Four - Why Is This Happening?

    This module offers simple tools for you to better understand the issue you have selected within its context (ecosystem).

    • Chapter One - Framing an Issue

      First, we review why properly framing an issue is so important. (4½ min)

    • Chapter Two - Understanding an Issue Within it's Ecosystem

      Our world is made of complex relationships, so we can’t simply look at one problem and one solution.  We must zoom out to look at all the factors that influence an issue to determine at which points intervening may have the most positive influence. (3 min)

    • Case Study - Youth Unemployment in Kenya

      This case study illustrates the range of choices a donor faces when deciding which interventions to support. (10 min)

    • Chapter Three - Drawing Your Landscape Map

      Using the previous case study as an example, you can now draw your own landscape map. (2 min)

  • Module Five - How to Make Change

    This module will show you the different approaches donors can use to help make change happen though the organisations or initiatives they support.

    • Chapter One - Good v Great Solutions

      There is often a huge difference between a “good” and a truly “great” solution to social and environmental problems. (9 min)

    • Chapter Two - Strengthening Charities

      Often we can make the biggest difference by strengthening the ability of organisation. (7 min)

    • Case Study - Advocacy on a Shoestring

      This case study illustrates how the right small investment in advocacy can go a long way in fostering change. (3 min)

  • Module Six - What is Impact?

    “Impact” is one of the most misused (and misunderstood) terms in charitable giving.  This module is a primer on the basic concepts smart donors should grasp to understand to make the most difference.

    • Chapter One - Measuring Results

      Using the example of a program to develop social and emotional skills in Colombian youth, this chapter explains the different ways to measure change. (5½ min)

    • Chapter Two - Evaluating Results

      We use the same example to demonstrate a “Theory of Change,” a method to determine if a program or activities are leading to improvements and ultimately solving a problem. (4½ min)

    • Chapter Three - Analysing a Website (Place2Be)

      Many donors get much of their information from a charity’s website.  This video is a guide to understanding (and questioning) the information communicated on a website. (9½ min)

    • Mythbuster - Cost per Head

      This video focuses on more common misperceptions about impact. (4 min)

  • Module Seven - Who is Making the Most Difference?

    By this point, you will have chosen a cause and issue area within it, performed enough basic research about the issue to know which approaches and solutions you wish to support, and created a short list of organizations that fulfill these criteria.  To help you in your final selection, we have filmed two case studies showing donors making their charitable giving decisions.

    • Chapter 1 - Selecting a Charity

      A concise list of selection criteria. (1 min)

    • Case Study One - The Case of the Confusing Names

      Case study 1

    • Case Study Two - Big, Medium & Small - Which Should I Choose?

      Case study 2

  • Conclusion - Your Engagement

    The mechanics of giving and a short primer on giving overseas.

    • The Mechanics of Giving - The mechanics of giving

      The mechanics of giving: tips and basic information on tax issues, privacy, fundraising, and other practical information to support your charitable giving. (10 min)

    • Extra! - International ThinkingGiving

      Bonus content