Theory, Model, and Framework Comparison and Selection Tool (T-CaST)

Mar 18,2019 | Consortium_staff Resource of the Month

What is the purpose of this tool?

Implementation researchers can use this tool to assess the utilization of one or more theory, model, or framework (TMF) in a particular project. More specifically, the tool can be used for:

  • Considering the characteristics of TMFs most important for the project
  • Presenting characteristics to stakeholders to identify their priorities
  • Evaluating the ways in which one or more TMF meets the needs of the project
  • Comparing potential TMFs to select the best fit for the project
  • Identifying ways in which multiple TMFs can complement one another to address all important criteria
  • Communicating to various stakeholders reasons why a TMF was selected
  • Increasing transparency related to TMF selection and use in reporting (manuscripts, grants, etc.)

How was this tool developed?

This tool was developed by the Dissemination and Implementation Methods Unit at the North Carolina Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute (NC TraCS) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill under the leadership of Principal Investigator Sarah A. Birken. You can read more about the process for criteria selection and tool development at

Where can I find TMFs to use with this tool?

An inventory of D&I TMFs can be found at

How do I access T-CaST?

T-CaST is available as a paper and online tool. Both versions can be found here: