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The SEED Method: An Evidence-Based Method for Engaging Communities

The SEED Method is a multi-stakeholder approach to engaging communities in research, problem solving, and action planning. Developed at Virginia Commonwealth University, SEED provides a framework for collaborative research and action planning that can be scaled up or down depending on project resources and goals.

Announcing the SEED Method Online Course and Toolkit!


The SEED Method Team is proud to announce the launch of the SEED METHOD ONLINE COURSE AND TOOLKIT hosted on the Extension Foundation’s Online Campus!

Access all our resources on our FREE self-paced online course!

Here are the online course highlights:

  • Each step in the unit is numbered for easy navigation.
  • Each unit ends with a recap section that includes a summary of all the SEED Method tools discussed in that unit.
  • Our  SEED Tools and Learning Resource Directory provides access and downloadable templates to over 100 updated SEED Method materials, including: instruction documents, templates, evaluation tools, examples that can be adapted to fit each project, 4 training videos, 4 webinars, and a growing collection of articles that present the results of recent SEED Method demonstration projects.
  • It’s FREE!!

There are five components of this online course and toolkit:

  • Unit # 1: Introduction to the Community research team and the Topic groups
  • Unit # 2: Introduction to facilitated activities
  • Unit # 3: Introduction to Action planning and Implementation
  • SEED Tools and Learning Resource Directory
  • End of course quiz

This online course and toolkit is for you if would like to:

  • Understand how to apply the SEED Method to your collaborative projects
  • Understand how to use and find SEED Method participatory tools
  • Understand the roles of the community-based participatory Research Team and Topic Groups
  • Understand how to utilize the following SEED Method participatory tools: stakeholder matrices, conceptual modeling, strategy development and prioritization

Ready to join?

Go to and click the bottom link titled “SEED Method Course”

Need more guidance?

Click here to view a guide for how to create an account on CAMPUS.

Still have questions?

Email us at

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About the Extension Foundation

The Extension Foundation was formed in 2006 by Extension Directors and Administrators. Today, the Foundation partners with Cooperative Extension through liaison roles and a formal plan of work with the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy (ECOP) to increase system capacity while providing programmatic services, and helping Extension programs scale and investigate new methods and models for implementing programs. The Foundation provides professional development to Cooperative Extension professionals and offers exclusive services to its members. In 2020 and 2021, the Extension Foundation has awarded 85% of its direct funding back to the Cooperative Extension System, 100% of funds are used to support Cooperative Extension initiatives. 

This technology is supported in part by New Technologies for Ag Extension (funding opportunity no. USDA-NIFA-OP-010186), grant no. 2023-41595-41325 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the Extension Foundation. For more information, please visit You can view the terms of useat

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