An Evidence-Based, Equitable Assessment for Coordinated Entry
The Matching to Appropriate Placement (MAP) assessment, when administered as part of a Coordinated Entry process, assesses the needs and vulnerabilities of people who are experiencing homelessness. The MAP has been developed by Dr Jack Barile with input from homeless services providers and from people with lived experience. Researchers regularly analyze MAP data from participating Continuums of Care to identify and address any validity, equity or other issues that emerge.
Pathways MISI makes the MAP assessment and MAP Guide available free of charge to any Continuum of Care that would like to use it. We ask that, in return, participating CoCs periodically share deidentified MAP data with us to ensure that it continues to work as intended.
QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
Is the MAP “evidence based”?
Virtually all the items in the MAP assessment have been drawn from established measures in the literature and are empirically supported based on published studies. They are combined into an overall measure that quantifies unique constructs, or sub measures. These include quality of life or ability, violence exposure, and physical and mental health crisis.
How accurate are MAP scores?
We are committed to continually analyzing MAP data to test the assessment’s reliability, and whether each of the measures scores similar constructs in a similar way. From this analysis, we can see that the internal validity is strong, even though the assessment covers a wide spectrum of topics or ideas.
When we look at the demographic splits among ages and along other major criteria, such as whether they identify as someone in crisis, are a danger to themselves or others, are living on the street, all associations are consistent with the previous literature around subgroup differences among these domains. They are correlated with one another the way you would expect.
Other major domains covered in the assessment – involvement in the criminal justice system, crisis, environment, housing history, violence and abuse – are all factors that are associated with people experiencing homelessness and living unsheltered, and relate to a person’s quality of life. Several published studies have shown that poor quality of life, along with the presence of a chronic health condition, can be a strong predictor of death.
The MAP and Racial Equity
Based on our initial testing of the assessment, we have not identified any racial or ethnic biases associated with the items or the total score. This is an important consideration that we will continue to examine. We believe - and data collected to date bears this out - that by constructing an assessment that considers the full range of lived experiences in combination with validated instruments, we will minimize the chance of unintended consequences associated with its implementation.
Who developed and maintains the MAP?
The MAP was developed by Jack Barile, PhD in collaboration with Pathways MISI and Coordinated Entry leaders from the Montana Continuum of Care Coalition. People with lived experience, including members of the Montana Youth Action Board, reviewed and provided valuable input on draft versions of the MAP.
We encourage Continua of Care that have implemented the MAP in their Coordinated Entry processes to provide suggestions on ways to improve the MAP, and to periodically share deidentified MAP data with Pathways MISI that will be used to measure the assessment's effectiveness.
MAP Copyright and Licensing
Pathways MISI holds the copyright for the MAP, and distributes it under a Creative Commons Attribution - No Derivatives 4.0 International License. CoCs that use the MAP may suggest changes to the assessment, but if they make any changes to the MAP themselves, they must not distribute the modified version. MAP questions 1-4 are based on the Healthy Days population assessment of health-related quality of life, developed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. They are in the public domain.