Making the Case: Compelling Data

This growing library features data points describing the impacts and outcomes of student-centered and competency-based teaching and learning. The data are sourced from research studies, evaluation reports and journal articles, as well as evidence collected directly by classroom, school, district and state leaders.

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    Social-Emotional Learning

    Small Groups and Flexibility Lead to Positive Learning Conditions

    Surveys and interviews with educators during COVID-19 indicated smaller groups and flexibility in shaping learning environments around students’ needs led to stronger relationships. 57% could better support social and emotional well-being in small groups.

    Student Agency and Voice

    Student Choice Increases Engagement in Reading

    This study of four 8th-grade teachers shows an increase in student agency when assigned reading was replaced with student-selected, self-paced choices. Peer relationships and classroom culture change as students become more engaged readers.

    Student Agency and Voice

    Flexible Scheduling Block Supports Student Choice and Differentiation

    A study of innovations during the COVID-19 pandemic documents the use of a flexible daily WIN (What I Need) block at a Massachusetts high school. Students can choose activities ranging from targeted academic supports to clubs.

    Student Agency and Voice

    Showing Learning Through Video Bolsters Student Agency

    A study of innovations during the COVID-19 pandemic documents “Teach-Back” Tuesdays at a Dallas school. By sharing videos of themselves teaching academic content, students bolster their agency while demonstrating learning.

    School and Classroom Culture

    Principals Report Project-Based Learning Helps Students Meet Academic Standards

    In a large national survey, 80% of principals implementing schoolwide project-based learning feel it helps students meet academic standards. 90% report students can extend their learning from projects to other disciplines.

    Curriculum and Instruction

    Mastery-Based Approach in Math Supports Self-Direction

    A study of innovations during the COVID-19 pandemic documents the move to a mastery-based math pathway across 2nd-5th grades. Students are responsible for charting and monitoring their own learning pathway to achieve mastery.

    Flexible Learning

    Students Report that Tech Increases Self-Directed Learning

    In national surveys, students report that technology helps them direct their own learning, with over half indicating tech helps them learn at their own pace and control their own learning process.

    Flexible Learning

    Perception of Technology as a Tool for Personalization Has Grown

    In national surveys, the number of teachers that view technology as a tool to personalize learning has increased quickly, with 62% reporting that tech allows them to better differentiate instruction in 2018 versus just 26% in 2014.

    Flexible Learning

    Post-Pandemic Teachers Want More Flexible Learning Environments

    In a 2021 survey, more than half of teachers want changes in the traditional learning model with 61% supporting more hands-on learning, 55% more flexible learning environments and 57% smaller class-sizes.

    Curriculum and Instruction

    Teachers Across Grade-Levels and Subjects Value Project-Based Learning

    Feedback from over 11,000 teachers nationwide indicates 77% feel project-based learning would benefit their students. This high valuation is consistent across grade-levels taught as well as subjects, from science to history. 

    Impact and Academic Outcomes

    Standardized Test Scores Improve After PD on Project-Based Learning

    At Lindsay Unified School District, students scored higher on the Diagnostic Reading Assessments® (DRA), Scholastic Reading Inventory® (SRI), and California’s Smarter Balanced Assessment system (SBAC) after teachers received PD on project-based learning.

    Curriculum and Instruction

    Project-Based Learning Promises Gains in Social Studies and Science

    Looking at 20 studies on project-based learning, researchers found a positive effect on student learning in Social Studies and Science, and to a smaller degree, math and literacy. 

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