Resources

Featured Resources

Looking Under the Hood of Competency-Based Education

American Institutes for Research | November 2016


This webinar featured highlights from AIR's study, including the core components of CBE and how they might benefit students. The CBE study team was joined by two of our state-level study partners, Paul Leather, deputy commissioner for the New Hampshire Department of Education, and Ryan Krohn, director of the Institute for Personalized Learning in Wisconsin. The state-level partners shared their reflections on the study's findings and implications for their CBE work.
Transcript coming soon.

Graduation Advantage Persists for Students in Deeper Learning Network High Schools

American Institutes for Research | March 2016

Can deeper learning approaches lead to higher graduation rates? A second round of graduation data from the Study of Deeper Learning: Opportunities and Outcomes suggests that perhaps they can.

Educator Competencies for Personalized, Learner-centered Teaching

Jobs for the Future & The Council of Chief State School Officers | August 2015

Jobs for the Future and the Council of Chief State School Officers have developed educator competencies for personalized, learner-centered teaching. The competencies are meant to serve as a first step in identifying the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that educators need in order to create and thrive in effective personalized, learner-centered environments.

Resources Bundles

Check out a variety of resources that include research, guides, and tools on the following.

Integrating Employability Skills: A Framework for All Educators

Center on Great Teachers and Leaders | April 2016

This interactive module – a collection of PowerPoint slides, handouts, sample agenda, and a facilitator’s guide - can help state education agencies and regional techical assistance providers in building their knowledge and capacity to integrate and prioritize employability skills at the state and local levels.

Graduation Advantage Persists for Students in Deeper Learning Network High Schools

American Institutes for Research | March 2016

Can deeper learning approaches lead to higher graduation rates? A second round of graduation data from the Study of Deeper Learning: Opportunities and Outcomes suggests that perhaps they can.

The Costly Consequences of Not Being Socially and Behaviorally Ready by Kindergarten: Associations with Grade Retention, Receipt of Academic Support Services, and Suspensions/Expulsions

Baltimore Education Research Consortium | March 2016

This report examined the relationships between social-behavioral readiness in kindergarten and three costly educational outcomes in over 9,000 elementary school students: being retained in grade, receiving additional services and supports through an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or 504 plan, and being suspended or expelled from school.

The Why, What, When, Where and How of Deeper Learning in American Secondary Schools

Jobs for the Future | December 2015

Jal Mehta and Sarah Fine put the deeper learning movement in historical context and describe their research into schools that are attempting to embrace the goals of deeper learning for all of their students. The paper concludes with suggestions for re-envisioning the industrial model of public schooling inherited from the early 20th century in order to build an educational system that supports and sustains deeper learning.

What is Deeper Learning Anyway?

National Institute for Student-Centered Education | October 2015

The Influence of Teaching

The Achievement Gap Initiative at Harvard University | October 2015

Agency is essential to students’ deeper learning—and school and life success. This report, based on a study of 16,000 6 to 9th grade classrooms, provides new evidence for the ways in which teachers can influence the emotions, motivations, mindsets, and behaviors that we associate with agency through their classroom practices.

What Does Evidence-Based Instruction in Social and Emotional Learning Actually Look Like in Practice? A Brief on Findings from CASEL’s Program Reviews

Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning | October 2015

In this brief the authors use the CASEL reviews of evidence-based programs to answer the question, “What do teachers and other adults actually need to do in the classroom and school to help students achieve the goals laid out in social and emotional learning (SEL) standards?” Specifically, they identify and describe four approaches that have been successfully used to promote social and emotional development in students.

Confronting the Challenge of Addressing Deeper Learning

National Institute for Student-Centered Education | September 2015

An Introduction to Deeper Learning

National Institute for Student-Centered Education | September 2015

The ambitions behind Deeper Learning—primarily to create students that are more independent, self-directed, and better prepared to cope with the modern demands of college, careers, and the world at large—are broadly popular. Nonetheless, schools that have truly managed to exemplify the conditions of Deeper Learning still represent a small percentage of the American education system at a time when the need for bold change is of critical importance. By the end of the workshop, participants will understand the definition of Deeper Learning (DL) outcomes; the conditions that have to be in place to support DL; and the tools to create a plan to successfully implement structures and practices that support Deeper Learning.

Deeper Learning: A Primer for State Legislators

Education Commission of the States | September 2015

This primer from Education Commission of the States provides a definition of deeper learning, describes how it corresponds with other learning approaches, and explores how it is being implemented as policy at the state level. It also offers a list of deeper learning resources.

Social and Emotional Learning Practices: A Self-Reflection Tool for Afterschool Staff

American Institutes for Research | September 2015

This self-reflection tool focuses on five social and emotional competencies, including self-awareness, self-management/emotion regulation, social awareness, relationship/social skills, and responsible decisionmaking. The tool is designed to help afterschool program staff reflect upon their own social and emotional competencies and their ability to support young people's SEL through program practices.

Lifelong Learning Skills for College and Career Readiness: Considerations for Education Policy

College & Career Readiness & Success Center | April 2015

This brief from the College & Career Readiness & Success Center highlights key takeaways from their annotated bibliography that summarizes a broad sample of lifelong learning skills research.

Social Emotional Learning in High School: How Three Urban High Schools Engage, Educate, and Empower Youth

Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education | April 2015

This report—based on in-depth case studies of three urban, socioeconomically and racially diverse small public high schools, a student survey, and a comparison of student survey results to a national sample of students—investigates the ways in which these schools design, implement, and practice school-wide social emotional learning as well as how this focus on social emotional learning shapes students’ educational experiences and outcomes.

EdWeek: Improving Accountability Systems to Create Internal Responsibility

Education Weekly | April 2015

Personalized testimonial from a teacher and girls' volleyball coach in Los Angeles and her appeal to focus on intrinsic motivation and internal responsibility. The author draws upon guidelines from CCSO's Innovation Lab Network to present 3 guidelines. 1). Provide information to drive continuous improvement through multiple measure dashboards and school quality review processes. 2). Build professional capacity. 3). Reorient accountability around shared responsibility and innovation.

Everybody Learns: Communication Tool Kits

Competency Works | April 2015

This post highligths three resources that are helpful for communication about student-centered and competency-based education.

Social and Emotional Skills for Life and Career: Policy Levers that Focus on the Whole Child

Center on Great Teachers & Leaders | March 2015

This policy snapshot from the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders summarizes existing research on the effects that education has on students’ social and emotional skills and offers insights into policy considerations for integrating and initiating SEL.

Deeper Learning Planning Guide

Monica Martinez | March 2015

Based on the Hewlett Foundation’s book Deeper Learning: How Eight Public Schools Are Transforming Education in the 21st Century, this tool provides guidance on how schools can best create the conditions and strategies needed to advance deeper learning practices.

Why the Personal Competencies Matter

Center on Innovations in Learning | March 2015

In this issue brief from the League of Innovators, a network of state education agency and Regional Comprehensive Center personnel with an interest in learning innovations, Sam Redding describes the connection between personal competencies and the mechanics of learning and how they result in mastery.

Webinar: Transforming Schools Using Project-Based Learning, Performance Assessment, and Common Core State Standards

Alliance for Excellent Education | March 2015

On March 10, 2015, the Alliance for Excellent Education held an in-depth discussion on how innovative schools can use performance assessment and project-based learning to transform education and improve learning for all students. This webinar examined a highly effective school network that has demonstrated how a new approach can enable all students to graduate from high school and succeed in college.

2015 CASEL Guide: Effective Social and Emotional Learning Programs—Middle and High School Edition

Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning | January 2015

The CASEL Guide provides a systematic framework for evaluating the quality of social and emotional programs and applies this framework to identify and rate well-designed, evidence-based SEL programs with potential for broad dissemination to schools across the United States. The Guide also shares best-practice guidelines for district and school teams on how to select and implement SEL programs. Finally, it offers recommendations for future priorities to advance SEL research and practice.

The Personal Competencies: Through the Eyes of the Classroom Teacher

Center on Innovations In Learning | January 2015

It is the job of the teacher to enhance student competencies. However, student competencies are dependent upon how well the teacher uses his or her own competencies. In this article, the Center on Innovations in Learning provides an account of an experienced teacher and how the development of her own cognitive, metacognitive, motivational, and social/emotional competencies played a central role in shaping the competencies of her students.

The 4Cs Research Series

Partnership for 21st Century Learning | January 2015

In collaboration with research partners at the University of Connecticut, P21 released a research series on key aspects of conceptualizing, developing, and assessing each of the 4Cs of Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking, and Creativity in 2015. The briefs outline findings from research about what we already know, what we need to know, and what we can do to embed 4Cs into practice.

An Up-Close Look at Student-Centered Math Teaching

Nellie Mae Foundation | November 2014

When teachers use student-centered techniques to engage students in more active and authentic ways, they can transform math classrooms into lively learning environments in which students take charge of their own learning, collaborate with others, persist in solving complicated problems and make meaningful connections to the world around them.

Skills for Success: Supporting and Assessing Key Habits, Mindsets, and Skills in PreK-12

New America Foundation | November 2014

Based on a review of the research and strategies discussed within this paper, New America makes several recommendations for how various entities— federal and state governments, LEAs and schools, and research institutions—can encourage progress on developing certain skills for success in schools, PreK–12.

Study of Deeper Learning: Opportunities and Outcomes

American Institutes for Research | September 2014

American Institutes for Research released three reports after a three-year study examining the ways in which schools provide deeper learning opportunities to students. (1) The Shape of Deeper Learning: Strategies, Structures, and Cultures in Deeper Learning Network High Schools (2) Providing Opportunities for Deeper Learning (3) Evidence of Deeper Learning Outcomes.

Social and Emotional Learning in the Daily Life of Classrooms

Center on Great Teachers and Leaders | April 2014

Regional technical assistance providers and state and district leaders can use this module to: (1) Deepen their knowledge and skills for integrating a social and emotional learning emphasis into their policy and planning work (2) Strengthen connections between social and emotional learning, the Common Core State Standards, and teacher evaluation and professional development systems, and (3) learn strategies for supporting school leaders in guiding teachers to reflect on their own teaching practices and social and emotional competencies.

Personal Competencies In Personalized Learning

Center on Innovations in Learning | January 2014

This paper lays out a framework for personal competencies that is largely aligned with the deeper learning competencies and looks at the role of the school community, the school, and the classroom teacher in delivering personalized instruction across the competencies.

The Something Other: Personal Competencies For Learning And Life

Center on Innovations in Learning | January 2014

These case studies from the Center on Innovations in Learning demonstrate what personalized learning looks like in practice.

Fundamentals of Learning

Center for Standards and Assessment Implementation | January 2014

This report, part of a series by the Center for Standards and Assessment Implementation, provides a framework to help educators transition to the classroom practices needed to ensure that students meet new college- and career-ready standards.

Getting A Handle On The Standards

Center for Standards and Assessment Implementation | January 2014

This report, part of a series from the Center for Standards and Assessment Implementation, discusses the key instructional shifts within new college- and career-ready standards.

Deeper Learning Defined

William and Flora Hewlett Foundation | March 2013

What is deeper learning? This overview document from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation defines the six deeper learning competencies and what deeper learning looks like for students.

Knowledge, Skills, and Dispositions: The Innovation Lab Network State Framework for College, Career, and Citizenship Readiness, and Implications for State Policy

Council of Chief State School Officers | February 2013

This white paper provides a framework for defining college and career readiness consistent with deeper learning, and describes policy and implementation considerations for states adopting or adapting the framework.

Employability Skills Framework

Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education | January 2013

The Employability Skills Framework is a one-stop resource from the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education for information and tools to inform the instruction and assessment of employability skills, which have a significant amount in common with deeper learning competencies.

Student-centered assessment: Self-assessment.

Students at the Center | January 2013

Self-assessment is simply a matter of having students identify strengths and weaknesses in their own work and revise accordingly. It is a tool that can promote learning if it is used while the learning is taking place. In order for self-assessment to be effective, students must be able to use their self-generated feedback to revise and improve their work before it is due for grading.

UNESCO: Teaching and Learning for a Sustainable Future

UNESCO | January 2010

Teacher education is a priority for UNESCO and, indeed, for the international community as a whole. Within its special work programme on education, the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development invited UNESCO to make a significant effort to help teachers worldwide not only to understand sustainable development concepts and issues but also to learn how to cope with interdisciplinary, values-laden subjects in established curricula. Teaching and Learning for a Sustainable Future is UNESCO’s response to that challenge, and a major contribution to the United Nations World Summit on Sustainable Development (Johannesburg, September 2002).

Compendium of Social-Behavioral Research Funded by NCER and NCSER: 2002–2013

Institute of Education Sciences |

Between 2002 and 2013, the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) funded over 245 projects focused on social-behavioral competencies or outcomes (e.g., social skills, dropout prevention) through the National Center for Education Research (NCER) and the National Center for Special Education Research (NCSER). NCER commissioned the development of this compendium to provide brief descriptions of these projects in a structured and easy-to-use format.

Enhancing engagement through active student response

Tincani, M. & Twyman, J. | August 2016

Student engagement is critical to academic success. Teaching techniques that involve a high level of active student responding (ASR) are effective ways to improve student engagement and are important components of evidence-based practice.

Preparing Students for a Project-Based World

Lathram, B., Lenz, B., & Ark, T.V. | August 2016

From Getting Smart and the Buck Institute for Education (BIE), the authors discuss and describe how project-based learning and deeper learning can better prepare students for the new economy. They also argue that project-based learning is the best way to address issues surrounding equity.

Leaping the college ready gap: what can be learned from schools that focus on deeper learning?

Marrtinez and McGrath | May 2016

Authors Martinez and McGrath profile the practices of 8 schools that focus on deeper learning and highlight how these schools are helping close the achievement gap for Latino and black students.

How School Districts Can Support Deeper Learning: The Need for Performance Alignment

Jobs for the Future | October 2015

This executive summary discusses the following: (1) deeper learning and its connection to central offices; (2) why the change to facilitate deeper learning is difficult for central offices; (3) how central offices can support systemwide deeper learning; and (4) recommendations for engaging central office staff members in redesigning their roles.

Building a Strong Relationship between Competency-Based Pathways and Career Technical Education

Achieve & The National Association of State Directors of Career and Technical Education | July 2015

This brief identifies opportunities for collaboration, integration, and strengthened relationships between competency-based pathways (CBP) and career and technical education (CTE) leaders. It explores the leverage points and challenges to integrating CTE into a CBP system and, where possible, offers state and district examples.

Civic Education and Deeper Learning

Jobs for the Future | February 2015

This Jobs for the Future report argues that civic education has a vital role to play in pursuing deeper approaches to learning.

Innovative Schools in Michigan

League of Innovators | January 2015

In this report from the League of Innovators, two teachers describe their experience with flipped classrooms. Flipped classrooms reverse the order of traditional schoolwork by having students work on instructional material during the day while receiving online lectures from the teacher at night. This approach allows for greater personalization by allowing teachers to provide students with more individualized attention during class time.

The Shape Of Deeper Learning: Strategies, Structures, And Cultures In Deeper Learning Network High Schools

American Institutes for Research | September 2014

This study uncovers deeper learning strategies used in 19 high schools across 10 school networks. The findings compile a range of strategies these schools have used to develop deeper learning competencies.

Study of Deeper Learning: Opportunities and Outcomes

American Institutes for Research | September 2014

American Institutes for Research released three reports after a three-year study examining the ways in which schools provide deeper learning opportunities to students. (1) The Shape of Deeper Learning: Strategies, Structures, and Cultures in Deeper Learning Network High Schools (2) Providing Opportunities for Deeper Learning (3) Evidence of Deeper Learning Outcomes.

Competency-Based Education: Staying Shallow or Going Deep?

American Institutes for Research and Center on Innovations in Learning | May 2017

The College and Career Readiness and Success Center, the Great Lakes and Midwest Regional Deeper Learning Initiative, and the Center on Innovations in Learning’s new brief, Competency-Based Education: Staying Shallow or Going Deep?, explores how states and districts can define learner competencies that reflect the full range of knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary for students to achieve college and career readiness.

Looking Under the Hood of Competency-Based Education

American Institutes for Research | November 2016


This webinar featured highlights from AIR's study, including the core components of CBE and how they might benefit students. The CBE study team was joined by two of our state-level study partners, Paul Leather, deputy commissioner for the New Hampshire Department of Education, and Ryan Krohn, director of the Institute for Personalized Learning in Wisconsin. The state-level partners shared their reflections on the study's findings and implications for their CBE work.
Transcript coming soon.

Reaching the Tipping Point: Insights on Advancing Competency Education in New England

Sturgis, C. | October 2016

This paper explores the core concepts of competency education, detailing the limitations of the traditional system, and how competency education is designed explicitly for equity and student success.

Meeting the Every Student Succeeds Act's Promise: State Policy to Support Personalized Learning

Frost, D., Worthen, M., Gentz, S., & Patrick, S. | October 2016

This report from iNACOL describes state policies that could improve student learning through personalized and competency-based learning. The authors specifically look into ESSA to explore previously unattainable opportunities for state and local stakeholders.

Competency-Based Policies and Pathways: Lessons from Colorado and Illinois

Achieve, Inc | September 2016

Through the state engagement and development of recommendations, Achieve has identified early lessons learned in Colorado and Illinois that will be of interest to other states exploring Competency Based Pathways

Personalized Competency-Based Education: Creating a Cohesive and Coherent System

Marzano Research | September 2016

This white paper outlines Marzano's response to the call to create a “cohesive understanding of how personalized learning and competency education go hand in hand” (Sturgis, 2016a). We refer to the approach as personalized competency-based education (PCBE).

Looking Under the Hood of Competency-Based Education

Haynes, E., Zeiser, K., Surr, W. et al. | June 2016

This recent AIR study of competency-based education, funded by the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, examines key features of CBE environments, and explores the relationship between student participation in CBE, and positive changes in students’ learning capacities, the skills, behaviors and dispositions associated with student success in school.

Competencies and Personalized Learning

Center on Innovations in Learning | March 2016

The Center on Innovations in Learning released the first chapter of its forthcoming Handbook on Personalized Learning for States, Districts and Schools. Senior Learning Specialist Sam Redding offers a rich conceptual introduction to the topics of competency and personalized learning, uncovering implicit definitions of these two concepts and exploring ways for educators to begin to grapple with the ways in which these models might complement or compete with one another.

Chugach School District: A Personalized, Performance-Based System

iNACOL | March 2016

This paper explores how an Alaskan school district shifted from a traditional K-12 education system to a personalized, performance-based system, embedded in the culture of the community, which led to increased student achievement.

Proficiency-based High School Diploma Systems in Maine: Local Implementation of State Standards-based Policy. Phase IV Policy Report.

Maine Education Policy Research Institute | March 2016

This report, fourth in a series on Maine's Proficiency-based diploma system, looks at the following questions: 1. How do Maine public school and school district educators and administrators perceive the challenges and facilitators of implementing the state’s mandated proficiency-based diploma system as described in An Act To Prepare Maine People for the Future Economy? 2. How do Maine public school and school district educators and administrators perceive the impacts of implementing the state’s mandated proficiency-based diploma system as described in An Act To Prepare Maine People for the Future Economy on management systems and structures, fiscal allocations, school climate, instruction, as well as curriculum and assessment? 3. How are Maine public school districts defining proficiency and developing local PK-12 proficiency-based diploma policies?

The Intersection of Afterschool & Competency-Based Learning: Emerging Trends, Policy Considerations, & Questions for the Future

American Youth Policy Forum | January 2016

The American Youth Policy Forum explores the intersection of out-of-school time programs and competency-based learning as a potential strategy for promoting students' college and career readiness skills. This report highlights three trends: understanding and defining learner competencies; competencies as currency for course credit; and badges as translators of competencies.

The Intersection of Afterschool and Competency-based Learning: Emerging Trends, Policy Considerations, and Questions for the Future

American Youth Policy Forum | January 2016

This white paper explores the intersection and relationship between these two fields, recommends ideal policy environments for implementing successful programs, provides real-world examples, and shines a spotlight on emerging trends for the future.

State Policy Scan: States that award credit for demonstration of competency     

Education Commission of the States | January 2016

This state policy scan from the Education Commission of the States looks at states that award credit, in lieu of seat time, for high school students who pass approved exams. This scan also provides an overview of state policies that allow credit to be awarded through the demonstration of competency.     

The Why, What, When, Where and How of Deeper Learning in American Secondary Schools

Jobs for the Future | December 2015

Jal Mehta and Sarah Fine put the deeper learning movement in historical context and describe their research into schools that are attempting to embrace the goals of deeper learning for all of their students. The paper concludes with suggestions for re-envisioning the industrial model of public schooling inherited from the early 20th century in order to build an educational system that supports and sustains deeper learning.

Partners in Crafting Competency-Based Pathways to College and Career Readiness

Great Lakes & Midwest Regional Deeper Learning Initiative | September 2015

This resource was produced as part of the Great Lakes and Midwest Regional Deeper Learning Initiative and is intended to illustrate the various ways in which state education agencies can advance competency-based education (CBE) initiatives. This resource provides an overview of CBE and a guiding action framework to advance CBE strategies. The resource also offers selected profiles of CBE-related work within the region and a list of CBE resources.

State Approaches to Competency-Based Education to Support College and Career Readiness for All Students

College & Career Readiness & Success Center | August 2015

This policy brief from the College and Career Readiness and Success Center highlights core elements of competency-based education (CBE), provides state policy examples, and explores how CBE is used to support college and career readiness.

Building a Strong Relationship between Competency-Based Pathways and Career Technical Education

Achieve | July 2015

This brief identifies opportunities for collaboration, integration, and strengthened relationships between CBP and CTE leaders. It explores the leverage points and challenges to integrating CTE into a CBP system, and where possible, offers examples of how states and local districts have started the journey to do so. Key questions are provided to help state and local leaders consider how CTE is, can, and should be a part of their CBP strategies.

The Role of Learning Progressions in Competency-Based Pathways

Achieve | July 2015

After a series of conversations with experts in the learning sciences, Achieve convened a set of state leaders, researchers and practitioners to identify promising efforts and steps to ensure state and district leaders can utilize this growing base of research. This report captures key findings from that conversation and identifies areas for further work.

Building a Strong Relationship between Competency-Based Pathways and Career Technical Education

Achieve & The National Association of State Directors of Career and Technical Education | July 2015

This brief identifies opportunities for collaboration, integration, and strengthened relationships between competency-based pathways (CBP) and career and technical education (CTE) leaders. It explores the leverage points and challenges to integrating CTE into a CBP system and, where possible, offers state and district examples.

Implementing Competency Education in K-12 Systems: Insights from Local Leaders

ComptencyWorks | June 2015

This report from ComptencyWorks, "Implementing Competency Education in K-12 Systems: Insights from Local Leaders," is designed to help districts move from traditional educational models to personalized and competency-based environments to meet individual student needs.

Competency-Based Education Letter to Postsecondary Accrediting Agencies

U.S. Department of Education | June 2015

This is a letter from the U.S. Education Department to accrediting agencies outlining criteria for determining the quality of postsecondary competency-based education programs. The department's letter also described requirements for a meaningful faculty role in competency-based education, including students' ability to interact directly with instructors.

Competency-Based Education Statement from Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions

Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions | June 2015

The Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions issued a common framework for how to assess and approve competency-based programs.

State Innovation: Deeper Learning in New Hampshire

National Association of State Boards of Education | June 2015

From the National Association of State Boards of Education's "State Innovation" series, Deeper Learning in New Hampshire explains how one state has developed a system that emphasizes 21st century knowledge, skills, and dispositions, while establishing strong expectations and the means for implementing them.

Assessment to Support Competency-Based Pathways

Achieve | April 2015

A core tenet of competency-based pathways (CBP) is that accurate, credible and useful student assessment information plays an essential role in supporting learning. Assessments should be a meaningful learning experience for students, provide rich information to educators so they can provide targeted support to students, and send students and parents clear signals about students’ readiness for next steps. This document addresses the role of summative assessment in supporting CBP, clarifies key assessment challenges, and provides examples and recommendations that will be useful in guiding those who wish to design and implement assessment systems to support CBP.

Everybody Learns: Communication Tool Kits

Competency Works | April 2015

This post highligths three resources that are helpful for communication about student-centered and competency-based education.

Competency-Based Learning: Definitions, Policies, and Implementation

REL Northeast & Islands (REL-NEI) | April 2015

With support from the Northeast College and Career Readiness Alliance (NCCRA), REL Northeast & Islands researchers studied how proficiency- or competency-based learning (P/CBL) is defined across New England and identified perceived challenges to and supports affecting its implementation. The findings provide information for states to leverage policy change and guidance for how to support districts and schools as they implement this reform.

Measuring Mastery or Seat Time? K-12 Competency Education Webinar

KnowledgeWorks | March 2015

This webinar, hosted by KnowledgeWorks Senior Director of National Policy Lillian Pace, explores what competency-based education policy and conversation looks like on the Hill.

Building Consensus and Momentum: A Policy and Political Landscape for K-12 Competency Education

KnowledgeWorks | February 2015

This paper from KnowledgeWorks examines the various policy conversations occurring in K–12 competency education, especially in the areas of accountability, assessment, and support.

Getting the Message Right Strategies for Articulating Competency Based Pathways to Diverse Audiences Webinar

Achieve and Council of Chief State School Officers | January 2015

In January 2015 Achieve and the Council for Chief State School Officers Innovation Lab Network held a technical assistance webinar highlighting resources that can be used to help communicate the value of and vision for competency-based pathways. This webinar was designed specifically for state education agency leaders, communication directors/public information officers, advocacy organization leaders, and others involved in planning and carrying out communication strategies around competency-based pathways. On the webinar, Achieve released a Communications Toolkit to aid state-level stakeholders in articulating the need for competency-based pathways.

The Carnegie Unit: A Century-Old Standard in a Changing Education Landscape

Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching | January 2015

This report from the Carnegie Foundation maintains that policymakers need to systemically test new learning standards, high-quality assessments, and accountability models in order to make U.S. education more transparent.

Competency-Based Pathways Communication Toolkit

Achieve | January 2015

This “Competency-Based Pathways Communications Toolkit” was specifically designed for the needs of states, but can be adapted for use by districts, advocates and others involved in similar discussions. The tools include resources on how to message competency-based pathways, exemplars of powerful messages and stories, frequently asked questions, and detailed how-to-guides on getting the message right.

Laying the Foundation for Competency Education: A Policy Guide for the Next Generation Educator Workforce

KnowledgeWorks and iNACOL | November 2014

This paper provides a vision and set of policy recommendations to help federal, state, and local leaders develop the workforce necessary to support teaching and learning in a competency-based K-12 education system.

Equity in Competency Education: Realizing the Potential, Overcoming the Obstacles

Students at the Center | November 2014

Equity is both a central goal and fundamental value of competency education. Competency-based approaches are designed to promote equity by preventing students from falling behind or staying behind. In practice, however, poorly implemented competency-based programs could inadvertently increase inequity—in opportunities and in outcomes. Equity in Competency Education: Realizing the Potential, Overcoming the Obstacles—the second paper of Students at the Center's Competency Education Research Series—examines equity concerns in competency education through the lens of family income, exploring the effects and implications, as well as proposing potential mitigations.

The Past and the Promise: Today's Competency Education Movement

Jobs for the Future | September 2014

This first paper in Students at the Center's Competency Education Research Series explores several essential aspects of today’s competency education reforms, including policy drivers, historical context, research and theory on effective student-centered learning, and current opportunities and challenges.

Competency-Based Education in Three Pilot Programs: Examining Implementation and Outcomes

RAND Corporation | August 2014

This report presents final results from the evaluation of Project Mastery, a grant program to support competency-based education initiatives in large school systems that serve a high proportion of disadvantaged youth. The report gives an overview of competency-based education and the Project Mastery grant projects and describes the implementation of competency-based educational features under each project. The report concludes with six lessons for policy, partnerships, and practice.

How to Explore, Organize, and Achieve Success in a Competency-Based Model

National Institute for Student-Centered Education | August 2014

Exploring, organizing and achieving success and sustainability in creating learning around competency-based models of education is a top-priority to many educators who are trying to reach a more diverse population of students. In this session, participants will learn how to outline a curation process; explore how personalized learning and competency-based education can social, emotional, and cogntive skills; evaluate methods for collecting data on student learning and experiences; and examine comprehensive ways to organize schoolwork leading to college and career-ready goals.

Advancing Competency-Based Pathways to College and Career Readiness Series: The Imperative for State Leadership

Achieve | July 2014

Across states, what this competency-based system looks like, and how states transition to it, will vary based on state priorities and context — which only reinforces the value of state leadership to find the route that fits best. But one thing is true across all states — the journey to change from a traditional system to a competency-based system that succeeds in helping far more students be prepared for college and career will require strong and steady leadership. This work is complicated and challenging, but worthwhile. This paper is designed to provide guidance to state leaders to ensure that their efforts translate into the right actions in districts and schools and then into solid results for students.

Advancing Competency-Based Pathways to College and Career Readiness: A State Policy Framework for Graduation Requirements, Assessment and Accountability

Achieve | July 2014

States across the nation are turning their aspirations for college and career readiness for all students into action. They are moving beyond policy and practice centered on a floor — aiming for students to attain minimal proficiency on basic academic standards — to a new focus on ensuring that all students develop the capacity to demonstrate mastery of content and skills toward and beyond college and career readiness.

Roadmap for Competency-based Systems: Leveraging Next Generation Technologies

Innovation Lab Network and 2Revolutions | June 2014

This is a guide to inform state and district leaders of the technology specifications and tools that support a shift toward a competency-based system. The guide is broken down to different levels of progression, from entry to transforming.

Implementation of a Proficiency‐Based Diploma System in Maine: Phase II - District Level Analysis

Maine Education Policy Research Insitute | January 2014

This report describes the findings from Phase II of a study of Maine's implementation of a proficiency-based diploma system. Phase II of this study focused on gathering data from participants in various district‐level roles as well as discussing district‐level benefits and challenges and work done with teachers and administrators in the various schools of each case study district.

Competency-based Education: Supporting Personalized Learning

Center on Innovations In Learning | January 2014

This issue brief is the first in a series produced by the Center on Innovations in Learning’s League of Innovators. The series will describe, discuss, and analyze policies and practices that enable personalization in education. Topics should be of particular interest to state education agencies and district and school personnel. This first issue overviews the complexities of implementing competencybased education, a component of personalization that has received growing attention.

Competency Education Series: Policy Brief One

KnowledgeWorks | April 2013

Part one of the Competency-Based Education Series includes a working definition for competency education, examples of states doing the ground breaking work in this area and an appropriate role for the federal government to remove policy barriers and to create diagnostic and assessment tools to measure effectiveness.

Meeting the Every Student Succeeds Act's Promise: State Policy to Support Personalized Learning

Frost, D., Worthen, M., Gentz, S., & Patrick, S. | October 2016

This report from iNACOL describes state policies that could improve student learning through personalized and competency-based learning. The authors specifically look into ESSA to explore previously unattainable opportunities for state and local stakeholders.

Advancing Personalized Learning through the iterative application of innovation science

Redding, Twyman and Murhpy, CIL | September 2016

The Center for Innovations in Learning has released a white paper that outlines how innovation science can help promote school transformation towards personalized learning through an intentional and structure cycle of continuious improvement.

Personalized Competency-Based Education: Creating a Cohesive and Coherent System

Marzano Research | September 2016

This white paper outlines Marzano's response to the call to create a “cohesive understanding of how personalized learning and competency education go hand in hand” (Sturgis, 2016a). We refer to the approach as personalized competency-based education (PCBE).

Handbook on Personalized Learning for States, Districts, and Schools

Murphy, M., Redding, S., & Twyman, J.S. | August 2016

From the Center on Innovations in Learning, this book serves as a clarifying guide on personalized learning and competency-based education. Topics include: personal competencies, student-centered learning, technology in support of personalized learning and the personalized learning community. The authors also discuss several descriptive studies that incorporate the principles of personalized learning in a number of settings.

Innopod: Personalized Learning

Center on Innovations In Learning | June 2016

"Innopods" are electronic, episodic series of information and activities that blend CIL's work in personalized learning and the science of innovation. This first Innopod covers the basics of personalized learning.

Seizing the Moment: Realizing the Promise of Student-Centered Learning

Our Piece of the Pie | May 2016

A policy brief outlining the outcomes of a meeting between a group of personalized learning practitioners and thought leaders in November 2015. Contains 5 principles for personalized learning and local, state, and federal policy recommendations.

Student-Centered Learning: Functional Requirements for Integrated Systems to Optimize Learning

iNACOL | May 2016

This report provides a framework for understanding the technology and processes that learning systems require to transition to student-centered learning. The authors tailor the report to educators, school leaders, and technology development specialists and discuss a few learning models, including mastery-based online and blended learning and project-based learning.

Competencies and Personalized Learning

Center on Innovations in Learning | March 2016

The Center on Innovations in Learning released the first chapter of its forthcoming Handbook on Personalized Learning for States, Districts and Schools. Senior Learning Specialist Sam Redding offers a rich conceptual introduction to the topics of competency and personalized learning, uncovering implicit definitions of these two concepts and exploring ways for educators to begin to grapple with the ways in which these models might complement or compete with one another.

Chugach School District: A Personalized, Performance-Based System

iNACOL | March 2016

This paper explores how an Alaskan school district shifted from a traditional K-12 education system to a personalized, performance-based system, embedded in the culture of the community, which led to increased student achievement.

The Why, What, When, Where and How of Deeper Learning in American Secondary Schools

Jobs for the Future | December 2015

Jal Mehta and Sarah Fine put the deeper learning movement in historical context and describe their research into schools that are attempting to embrace the goals of deeper learning for all of their students. The paper concludes with suggestions for re-envisioning the industrial model of public schooling inherited from the early 20th century in order to build an educational system that supports and sustains deeper learning.

The Implications of Deeper Learning for Adolescent Immigrants and English Language Learners

Jobs for the Future | November 2015

This paper from Jobs for the Future maintains that the nation’s immigrant students and English language learners are better equipped to benefit from focused, critical, and engaging classroom instruction than non-immigrant, monolingual students. However, before immigrant students and English language learners can benefit from deeper learning practices, the view that they are deficient and in need of remediation must be reframed. This paper goes on to discuss strategies on reframing the conversation in a way that includes immigrant students and English language learners in a broader deeper learning context.

A State Policy Framework for Scaling Personalized Learning

KnowledgeWorks | August 2015

With support from the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, new research from KnowledgeWorks examines how states can help districts shape conditions to scale up personalized learning environments.

Centered on Results: Assessing the Impact of Student-Centered Learning

Nellie Mae Foundation | April 2015

While many of the concepts and approaches that compromise student-centered learning (SCL) have deep roots in learning theory, the cognitive sciences, and youth and child development, empirical research on SCL’s impact in K-12 classrooms remains limited. To address this gap, the Foundation recently commissioned a series of studies that evaluate the effects of a variety of student-centered practices in secondary schools. The outcomes of this study were largely positive, demonstrating meaningful effects on student achievement and engagement.

Centered on Results: Assessing the Impact of Student-Centered Learning

Nellie Mae Foundation | April 2015

Nellie Mae recently commissioned a series of studies that evaluate the effects of a variety of student-centered practices in secondary schools.The studies help illustrate what student-centered learning can look like in a range of contexts, including high school math classrooms, STEM courses that blend online and in-person learning, and whole-school models that infuse student-centered practices throughout the curriculum.

Why the Personal Competencies Matter

Center on Innovations in Learning | March 2015

In this issue brief from the League of Innovators, a network of state education agency and Regional Comprehensive Center personnel with an interest in learning innovations, Sam Redding describes the connection between personal competencies and the mechanics of learning and how they result in mastery.

Is Your Child’s School Student-Centered? A Checklist for School Visits

Getting Smart | March 2015

Directed at parents, Bonnie Lathram's 3/21/15 blog outlines the 4 student-centered domains determined by The Nellie Mae Education Foundation. It details 12 specific characteristics that student-centered learning schools exhibit and provides 8 questions for parents to engage their school leadership with.

Managing Learning through Learning Profiles (Part 2 of 3)

National Institute for Student-Centered Education | February 2015

Participants will outline ways to better understand learning profiles and their value, review methods for data collection for using learning profiles effectively, and explore examples for using learning profiles to support content, process, and products.

Empowering Student Voice through Differentiated Instruction (Part 3 of 3)

National Institute for Student-Centered Education | February 2015

Participants who view this video will identify the importance of understanding the purpose of student voice via their interests, explore examples of using student interests to support - student voice and learning, and reflect on approaches to incorporate into practice.

Innovative Schools in Michigan

League of Innovators | January 2015

In this report from the League of Innovators, two teachers describe their experience with flipped classrooms. Flipped classrooms reverse the order of traditional schoolwork by having students work on instructional material during the day while receiving online lectures from the teacher at night. This approach allows for greater personalization by allowing teachers to provide students with more individualized attention during class time.

Including the Learner in Personalized Learning

Center on Innovations in Learning | January 2015

This issue brief from the League of Innovators explores how giving learners more autonomy over learning outcomes increases their academic engagement.

Personalized Learning in Wisconsin: FLIGHT Academy

Center on Innovations in Learning | January 2015

This report from the Center on Innovations in Learning examines a FLIGHT Academy school in Wisconsin, a personalized learning program that operates within a traditional school model, through firsthand accounts of the educators who designed and implemented the program.

Meeting the Learning Needs of all Students (Part 1 of 3)

National Institute for Student-Centered Education | January 2015

Participants that view this session will outline ways to better understand the relationship of DI Readiness and Formative Assessments; explore examples of DI Readiness to teacher planning of Content, Process, and Products; and reflect on their next steps for incorporating these DI Readiness concepts.

Innovation in Action: State Pathways for Advancing Student-Centered Learning

Council of Chief State School Officers | January 2015

This document provides an overview of the ILN vision and the Policy & Implementation Logic Model and provides examples of how state chiefs are using the Logic Model to put their vision into action. What sets this work apart from other state policy frameworks is that a dozen states around the country are actively leveraging this Logic Model to create coherent education systems that support learners as they prepare for college and careers.

The Personal Competencies: Through the Eyes of the Classroom Teacher

Center on Innovations In Learning | January 2015

It is the job of the teacher to enhance student competencies. However, student competencies are dependent upon how well the teacher uses his or her own competencies. In this article, the Center on Innovations in Learning provides an account of an experienced teacher and how the development of her own cognitive, metacognitive, motivational, and social/emotional competencies played a central role in shaping the competencies of her students.

The Students at the Center Hub

Jobs for the Future and Nellie Mae Foundation | January 2015

District Conditions for Scale: A Practical Guide to Scaling Personalized Learning

KnowledgeWorks | November 2014

Over the past few years there have been numerous publications, reports, and briefs released that focus on the elements of an innovative school from a programmatic and a policy standpoint Personalized learning, broadly speaking, is stuck in the school pilot phase. There are countless examples of personalized learning environments, models, and schools from coast to coast. But how are the other students in that district being educated? One important step in this work is to identify the conditions for scale that exist at a district level. In other words, what are the conditions that a K-12 school district should put in place to support the scaling of personalized learning? This paper discusses ten key district conditions, explore the cross cutting meta themes, and begin to build the alignment between the district conditions and state policy levers.

Equity in Competency Education: Realizing the Potential, Overcoming the Obstacles

Students at the Center | November 2014

Equity is both a central goal and fundamental value of competency education. Competency-based approaches are designed to promote equity by preventing students from falling behind or staying behind. In practice, however, poorly implemented competency-based programs could inadvertently increase inequity—in opportunities and in outcomes. Equity in Competency Education: Realizing the Potential, Overcoming the Obstacles—the second paper of Students at the Center's Competency Education Research Series—examines equity concerns in competency education through the lens of family income, exploring the effects and implications, as well as proposing potential mitigations.

An Up-Close Look at Student-Centered Math Teaching

Nellie Mae Foundation | November 2014

When teachers use student-centered techniques to engage students in more active and authentic ways, they can transform math classrooms into lively learning environments in which students take charge of their own learning, collaborate with others, persist in solving complicated problems and make meaningful connections to the world around them.

Lighting the Path to Personalized Learning: Inspiring Stories from Next Gen Schools

Getting Smart | November 2014

With the support of Next Generation Learning Challenges, the Getting Smart team spent the last year visiting and learning from next gen schools across the country. This report tells the story of 14 schools across the country that are breaking through the traditional model of school to present students with next gen learning experiences that are personalized and engaging. Each of these schools are NGLC grantees and adhere to three Personalized Learning School Design Attributes that are key to reimagining public education.

The Shape Of Deeper Learning: Strategies, Structures, And Cultures In Deeper Learning Network High Schools

American Institutes for Research | September 2014

This study uncovers deeper learning strategies used in 19 high schools across 10 school networks. The findings compile a range of strategies these schools have used to develop deeper learning competencies.

Blended Learning: Bringing Personalized Education to Scale

National Association of State Boards of Education | July 2014

This guide from the National Association of State Boards of Education is designed to aid discussion on state educational goals regarding blended learning. It provides an overview of its potential to personalize education, action steps states can take, and includes worksheets aimed at facilitating policy discussions.

Student-centered schools: Closing the Opportunity Gap

Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education | June 2014

SCOPE has now released the culminating research from its Student-Centered Schools Study: a cross-case analysis, a technical report, a research and policy brief, and an interactive online tool for educators. Together, these pieces offer evidence of the positive impact of student-centered learning and practical hands-on tools educators can use to reflect on and develop their practice.

Technology-Enabled Personalized Learning

Friday Institute for Educational Innovation | February 2014

This report highlights how to use technology to support personalized learning goals. The report is based on findings from a summit held by North Carolina State University's Friday Institute for Educational Innovation and identifies five essential ingredients for personalized learning.

Putting Students At The Center

Nellie Mae Foundation & Jobs for the Future | January 2014

This reference guide shares current research and tools for practitioners to use as they support students in reaching college and career readiness and civic engagement outcomes. It includes a list of learning approaches and tools available to all stakeholders interested in implementing student-centered learning environments.

Early Progress: Interim Research On Personalized Learning

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation | January 2014

This report details how students attending public charter schools implementing personalized learning plans demonstrate greater gains in mathematics and reading.

Personal Competencies In Personalized Learning

Center on Innovations in Learning | January 2014

This paper lays out a framework for personal competencies that is largely aligned with the deeper learning competencies and looks at the role of the school community, the school, and the classroom teacher in delivering personalized instruction across the competencies.

The Something Other: Personal Competencies For Learning And Life

Center on Innovations in Learning | January 2014

These case studies from the Center on Innovations in Learning demonstrate what personalized learning looks like in practice.

Competency-based Education: Supporting Personalized Learning

Center on Innovations In Learning | January 2014

This issue brief is the first in a series produced by the Center on Innovations in Learning’s League of Innovators. The series will describe, discuss, and analyze policies and practices that enable personalization in education. Topics should be of particular interest to state education agencies and district and school personnel. This first issue overviews the complexities of implementing competencybased education, a component of personalization that has received growing attention.

The Student-Centered School

NISCE | January 2014

This document builds on the earlier white paper and attempts to characterize the elements that make a school more or less ‘student-centered.’ Drawing on research into creating positive school cultures, developing intentional relationships and building outstanding leadership, the author then introduces an instructional model for consideration. Dubbed the “NISCE Instructional Model,” it reflects a belief in supporting the ‘whole teacher’ as a means for teaching the ‘whole student.’

Personalization in Schools

Students at the Center | April 2012

This policy brief discusses different personalization models that are utilized in schools and provides districts and teachers with options and examples of personalization in practice.

Personalization In Schools

Jobs for the Future | January 2012

This policy brief discusses various personalization models that are utilized in schools and provides districts and teachers with options and examples of personalization in practice.

Putting Student-Centered Education in Context

National Institute for Student-Centered Education |

This paper extends the definition of ‘student-centered education’ beyond its traditional use, noting that it is “not a single technique or single model. Rather it is a set of attitudes, skills and considerations that affect the way an educator or school will approach learners. It recognizes the individuality of each student and, by extension, the primary importance of the relationship between learners and teachers.”

Every Student Succeeds Act Primer: Deeper Learning

Alliance for Excellent Ed | July 2016

This Alliance for Excellent Education Fact Sheet offers guidance on the opportunities inherent in ESSA for supporting deeper learning through assessment strategies, student supports and building teacher capacity.

Formative assessment for next generation science standards: A proposed model

Educational Testing Service | January 2016

This report offers a review of research on formative assessment, and offers a conceptual model to guide the use of formative assessment in gauging student learning in science aligned with the new Next Generation Science Standards.

On the Road to Assessing Deeper Learning: What Direction Do Test Blueprints Provide?

National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, & Student Testing | September 2015

This research study examined the extent to which test items in the PARCC and Smarter Balanced Assessments measure deeper learning. Findings suggest that the new tests do increase cognitive demand over prior tests, but that higher order thinking is only required for fewer than 20 percent of test items. Results showed that the tests' performance tasks, in particular, required students to demonstrate their deeper learning and higher order thinking.

State Innovation: Deeper Learning in New Hampshire

National Association of State Boards of Education | June 2015

From the National Association of State Boards of Education's "State Innovation" series, Deeper Learning in New Hampshire explains how one state has developed a system that emphasizes 21st century knowledge, skills, and dispositions, while establishing strong expectations and the means for implementing them.

Forum Guide to College and Career Ready Data

National Forum for Education Statistics | May 2015

The Forum Guide to College and Career Ready Data examines how data are being used to support CCR initiatives. Each of the guide's use cases includes policy and program questions to consider, a list of key data needs, useful analytics, suggested feedback to request from data users, and emerging needs related to the data use.

Assessment to Support Competency-Based Pathways

Achieve | April 2015

A core tenet of competency-based pathways (CBP) is that accurate, credible and useful student assessment information plays an essential role in supporting learning. Assessments should be a meaningful learning experience for students, provide rich information to educators so they can provide targeted support to students, and send students and parents clear signals about students’ readiness for next steps. This document addresses the role of summative assessment in supporting CBP, clarifies key assessment challenges, and provides examples and recommendations that will be useful in guiding those who wish to design and implement assessment systems to support CBP.

Centered on Results: Assessing the Impact of Student-Centered Learning

Nellie Mae Foundation | April 2015

While many of the concepts and approaches that compromise student-centered learning (SCL) have deep roots in learning theory, the cognitive sciences, and youth and child development, empirical research on SCL’s impact in K-12 classrooms remains limited. To address this gap, the Foundation recently commissioned a series of studies that evaluate the effects of a variety of student-centered practices in secondary schools. The outcomes of this study were largely positive, demonstrating meaningful effects on student achievement and engagement.

Centered on Results: Assessing the Impact of Student-Centered Learning

Nellie Mae Foundation | April 2015

Nellie Mae recently commissioned a series of studies that evaluate the effects of a variety of student-centered practices in secondary schools.The studies help illustrate what student-centered learning can look like in a range of contexts, including high school math classrooms, STEM courses that blend online and in-person learning, and whole-school models that infuse student-centered practices throughout the curriculum.

Webinar: Transforming Schools Using Project-Based Learning, Performance Assessment, and Common Core State Standards

Alliance for Excellent Education | March 2015

On March 10, 2015, the Alliance for Excellent Education held an in-depth discussion on how innovative schools can use performance assessment and project-based learning to transform education and improve learning for all students. This webinar examined a highly effective school network that has demonstrated how a new approach can enable all students to graduate from high school and succeed in college.

Measuring Mastery or Seat Time? K-12 Competency Education Webinar

KnowledgeWorks | March 2015

This webinar, hosted by KnowledgeWorks Senior Director of National Policy Lillian Pace, explores what competency-based education policy and conversation looks like on the Hill.

Building Consensus and Momentum: A Policy and Political Landscape for K-12 Competency Education

KnowledgeWorks | February 2015

This paper from KnowledgeWorks examines the various policy conversations occurring in K–12 competency education, especially in the areas of accountability, assessment, and support.

Multiple Measures for College Readiness

Education Commission of the States | February 2015

Seat time has long been the standard for measuring college readiness. Breaking away from tradition, this ECS Education Trends report examines multiple measures of college readiness aside from seat time and offers policy considerations for states.

Supporting Formative Assessment for Deeper Learning: A Primer for Policymakers

Council of Chief State School Officers | December 2014

This report is a guide for policymakers to implement formative assessments for deeper learning. Effective formative assessment is essential to successfully implementing new college- and career-ready standards.

Skills for Success: Supporting and Assessing Key Habits, Mindsets, and Skills in PreK-12

New America Foundation | November 2014

Based on a review of the research and strategies discussed within this paper, New America makes several recommendations for how various entities— federal and state governments, LEAs and schools, and research institutions—can encourage progress on developing certain skills for success in schools, PreK–12.

The Impact of Formative Assessment and Learning Intentions on Student Achievement

Hanover Research | August 2014

This brief [provides] an overview of the main discourses in literature linking formative assessment and learning objectives to student achievement.

Assessing Deeper Learning: A Survey of Performance Assessment and Mastery-Tracking Tools

Getting Smart | April 2014

This report outlines twelve key features of a performance based assessment system including; interoperability, calibration of scores, a library of tasks, support for multiple revisions and collaboration, standards-based project rubrics, available professional development, reporting tools, customization, student portfolio development, an updated user experience and an affordable price tag.

Employability Skills Framework

Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education | January 2013

The Employability Skills Framework is a one-stop resource from the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education for information and tools to inform the instruction and assessment of employability skills, which have a significant amount in common with deeper learning competencies.

Assessing Deeper Learning

Alliance for Excellent Education | July 2011

This brief shows what assessments that measure deeper learning would look like, how they are used in other countries, how technology can support their development, and how they can be implemented feasibly.

The Role of Learning Progressions in Competency-Based Pathways

Achieve | July 2015

After a series of conversations with experts in the learning sciences, Achieve convened a set of state leaders, researchers and practitioners to identify promising efforts and steps to ensure state and district leaders can utilize this growing base of research. This report captures key findings from that conversation and identifies areas for further work.

Building a Strong Relationship between Competency-Based Pathways and Career Technical Education

Achieve & The National Association of State Directors of Career and Technical Education | July 2015

This brief identifies opportunities for collaboration, integration, and strengthened relationships between competency-based pathways (CBP) and career and technical education (CTE) leaders. It explores the leverage points and challenges to integrating CTE into a CBP system and, where possible, offers state and district examples.

Implementing Competency Education in K-12 Systems: Insights from Local Leaders

ComptencyWorks | June 2015

This report from ComptencyWorks, "Implementing Competency Education in K-12 Systems: Insights from Local Leaders," is designed to help districts move from traditional educational models to personalized and competency-based environments to meet individual student needs.

Competency-Based Education Statement from Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions

Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions | June 2015

The Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions issued a common framework for how to assess and approve competency-based programs.

State Innovation: Deeper Learning in New Hampshire

National Association of State Boards of Education | June 2015

From the National Association of State Boards of Education's "State Innovation" series, Deeper Learning in New Hampshire explains how one state has developed a system that emphasizes 21st century knowledge, skills, and dispositions, while establishing strong expectations and the means for implementing them.

Measuring Mastery or Seat Time? K-12 Competency Education Webinar

KnowledgeWorks | March 2015

This webinar, hosted by KnowledgeWorks Senior Director of National Policy Lillian Pace, explores what competency-based education policy and conversation looks like on the Hill.

Multiple Measures for College Readiness

Education Commission of the States | February 2015

Seat time has long been the standard for measuring college readiness. Breaking away from tradition, this ECS Education Trends report examines multiple measures of college readiness aside from seat time and offers policy considerations for states.

The Carnegie Unit: A Century-Old Standard in a Changing Education Landscape

Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching | January 2015

This report from the Carnegie Foundation maintains that policymakers need to systemically test new learning standards, high-quality assessments, and accountability models in order to make U.S. education more transparent.

The Effects of Concurrent Enrollment on the College-Going and Remedial Education Rates of Colorado’s High School Students

Colorado Department of Higher Education | March 2014

This study examined postsecondary educational outcomes for 2010, 2011, and 2012 Colorado high school graduates. The study found a number of positive outcomes for students who took dual and concurrent enrollment courses, and used regression analysis to control statistically for the impact of student demographic variables, ACT performance, and school variables,

Implementation of a Proficiency‐Based Diploma System in Maine: Phase II - District Level Analysis

Maine Education Policy Research Insitute | January 2014

This report describes the findings from Phase II of a study of Maine's implementation of a proficiency-based diploma system. Phase II of this study focused on gathering data from participants in various district‐level roles as well as discussing district‐level benefits and challenges and work done with teachers and administrators in the various schools of each case study district.

Promoting Rigorous Career and Technical Education Programs of Study: Year 3 Quantitative Analysis Report

RTI International | August 2013

This four-year research project is funded by the Office of Vocational and Adult Education. It is intended to support states in strengthening the quality of their career and technical education (CTE) programs and in improving their capacity to report valid and reliable data. The analysis investigates how the educational achievement and post-program outcomes of rigorous program of study (RPOS) concentrators, students concentrating in other CTE programs, and all other students (i.e., those who were either CTE participants or who had not enrolled in any CTE course work) differ across two years and across three participating sites in each of six states.

Taking College Courses in High School: A Strategy for College Readiness: The College Outcomes of Dual Enrollment in Texas

Jobs for the Future | October 2012

This study from Jobs for the Future used rigorous quasi-experimental methods to control for factors other than dual enrollment that could explain student success by comparing dual enrollees to non-dual enrollees who are otherwise closely matched academically and socially. High school students who had completed a college course before graduationwere found to have a number of positive postsecondary educational outcomes; these findings held for all racial groups as well as for students from low-income families.

Ten Questions for Mathematics Teachers… and How PISA Can Help Answer Them

OECD | November 2016

This report delves into topics such as, “How much should I encourage my students to be responsible for their own learning in mathematics?” or “As a mathematics teacher, how important is the relationship I have with my students?”. It gives teachers timely and relevant data and analyses that can help them reflect on their teaching strategies and how students learn.

School Features and Student Opportunities for Deeper Learning: What Makes a Difference?

Huberman, M., Duffy, H., Mason, J., Zeiser, K.L., O'Day, J. | October 2016

This recent AIR report develops on the findings of The Study of Deeper Learning: Opportunities and Outcomes. The authors studied variation between network schools in characteristics associated with student achievement and find three school-level conditions that facilitate deeper learning.

Teacher leadership & deeper learning for all students

Center for Teaching Quality | March 2016

This report states that although there is a growing number of policy and business leaders joining teachers and administrators to broaden student access to deeper learning opportunities, there is still much work that needs to be done. To that end, this report examines the role of teacher leadership in this endeavor, including: 1) how teachers learn to lead; 2) conditions needed for teacher leadership; 3) cultivating and scaling teacher leadership, and 4) the steps that need to be taken for stakeholders to help advance teacher leadership.

How Deeper Learning Can Create a New Vision for Teaching

NCTAF | February 2016

Research indicates that great teaching has tremendous impact on student learning and achievement, particularly for poor students and students of color. With that in mind, this white paper focuses on the shift in teachers’ work and support that is necessary to help educators facilitate rich, meaningful learning experiences for all students.

How Deeper Learning can create a new vision for teaching

National Commission on Teaching & America's Future | February 2016

This paper from The National Commission on Teaching and America's Future and ConsultED Strategists offers illustrative examples of how schools in the deeper learning network are creating the conditions needed to support teachers in assuming new roles such as "learning designer, strategists, facilitators, coach and mentors" as they implement six key strategies that teachers can use to promote deeper learning outcomes for students.

The Intersection of Afterschool and Competency-based Learning: Emerging Trends, Policy Considerations, and Questions for the Future

American Youth Policy Forum | January 2016

This white paper explores the intersection and relationship between these two fields, recommends ideal policy environments for implementing successful programs, provides real-world examples, and shines a spotlight on emerging trends for the future.

Deeper Learning Research Series: Deeper Teaching

Jobs for the Future | December 2015

This paper offers a definition of "deeper teaching"—the kinds of instructional strategies and moment-by-moment teaching decisions that enable students to learn deeply—and describes the kinds of early-career guidance and supports that teachers need to understand what deeper teaching entails and to put it into practice.

The Influence of Teaching

The Achievement Gap Initiative at Harvard University | October 2015

Agency is essential to students’ deeper learning—and school and life success. This report, based on a study of 16,000 6 to 9th grade classrooms, provides new evidence for the ways in which teachers can influence the emotions, motivations, mindsets, and behaviors that we associate with agency through their classroom practices.

What Does Evidence-Based Instruction in Social and Emotional Learning Actually Look Like in Practice? A Brief on Findings from CASEL’s Program Reviews

Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning | October 2015

In this brief the authors use the CASEL reviews of evidence-based programs to answer the question, “What do teachers and other adults actually need to do in the classroom and school to help students achieve the goals laid out in social and emotional learning (SEL) standards?” Specifically, they identify and describe four approaches that have been successfully used to promote social and emotional development in students.

Social and Emotional Learning Practices: A Self-Reflection Tool for Afterschool Staff

American Institutes for Research | September 2015

This self-reflection tool focuses on five social and emotional competencies, including self-awareness, self-management/emotion regulation, social awareness, relationship/social skills, and responsible decisionmaking. The tool is designed to help afterschool program staff reflect upon their own social and emotional competencies and their ability to support young people's SEL through program practices.

Educator Competencies for Personalized, Learner-centered Teaching

Jobs for the Future & The Council of Chief State School Officers | August 2015

Jobs for the Future and the Council of Chief State School Officers have developed educator competencies for personalized, learner-centered teaching. The competencies are meant to serve as a first step in identifying the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that educators need in order to create and thrive in effective personalized, learner-centered environments.

Deeper Learning for Students with Disabilities

Jobs for the Future | August 2015

Part of the Students At The Center series

Deeper Learning: Improving Student Outcomes for College, Career, and Civic Life

Education Policy Center | August 2015

This report, from AIR's Education Policy Center, highlights recent research suggesting that suggests that a focus on deeper learning produces a number of positivelearning outcomes for students, regardless of their backgrounds. Students who attended a set of schools in networks associated with the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation’s Deeper Learning Community of Practice attained better educational outcomes than students in non-network comparison schools across several indicators, including academic outcomes, inter- and intra-personal skills, graduation, and postsecondary enrollment.

Incorporating Social and Emotional Learning Into Classroom Instruction and Educator Effectiveness: A Toolkit for Tennessee Teachers and Administrators

Center on Great Teachers and Leaders | July 2015

This toolkit provides educators with resources for integrating social and emotional learning into their classrooms through Tennessee’s teacher evaluation system, the Tennessee Educator Acceleration Model (TEAM). Although the Toolkit is aligned with the TEAM model, other states and districts can also use the example teacher activities, student behaviors, model lessons, and discussion prompts to promote social and emotional learning in their classrooms.

Motivation Matters: How New Research Can Help Teachers Boost Student Engagement

Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching | July 2015

This report aims to help educators and policymakers understand the complex topic of student motivation. Authors Susan Headden and Sarah McKay define key terms, discuss new research findings, and examine promising classroom strategies for improving students’ engagement in learning.

State Innovation: Deeper Learning in New Hampshire

National Association of State Boards of Education | June 2015

From the National Association of State Boards of Education's "State Innovation" series, Deeper Learning in New Hampshire explains how one state has developed a system that emphasizes 21st century knowledge, skills, and dispositions, while establishing strong expectations and the means for implementing them.

Preparing Leaders for Deeper Learning

Getting Smart | May 2015

This paper outlines the attributes of next-generation teacher preparation and makes recommendations for supporting the redesign of teacher preparation and development systems so as to equip teachers to create and thrive in deeper learning environments.

Developing a System of Micro-credentials: Supporting Deeper Learning in the Classroom

Digital Promise | March 2015

Teachers earn credentials at the beginning of their careers, but they learn new skills every day. While teachers are recognized for the time they spend in formal professional development settings, they often don’t have the opportunity to demonstrate the full breadth of what they have learned, including in informal contexts. To address this, Digital Promise is building a system of micro-credentials to provide professional educators a new way to identify competencies they are developing and gain recognition for the skills they learn throughout their careers.

The Personal Competencies: Through the Eyes of the Classroom Teacher

Center on Innovations In Learning | January 2015

It is the job of the teacher to enhance student competencies. However, student competencies are dependent upon how well the teacher uses his or her own competencies. In this article, the Center on Innovations in Learning provides an account of an experienced teacher and how the development of her own cognitive, metacognitive, motivational, and social/emotional competencies played a central role in shaping the competencies of her students.

An Up-Close Look at Student-Centered Math Teaching

Nellie Mae Education Foundation | November 2014

The American Institutes of Research (AIR), with support from the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, conducted a study of highly regarded high school math teachers to expand the research base in two important ways. First, rather than assuming student-centered instruction is a monolithic construct, the team used a case study approach to provide rich descriptions of how the approach plays out in several classrooms, taking into account how teachers’ personal philosophy and the school’s instructional context might influence their practice. The case study also provided insights into students’ perspectives on different approaches to mathematics instruction. Second, the researchers looked across a larger sample of classrooms to determine the effects of varying degrees of student-centeredness on students’ engagement with learning and their problem-solving skills.

An Up-Close Look at Student-Centered Math Teaching

Nellie Mae Foundation | November 2014

When teachers use student-centered techniques to engage students in more active and authentic ways, they can transform math classrooms into lively learning environments in which students take charge of their own learning, collaborate with others, persist in solving complicated problems and make meaningful connections to the world around them.

Self-Assessing Social and Emotional Instruction and Competencies: A Tool for Teachers

Yoder, N. | February 2014

In this tool, teachers can self-assess on 10 teaching practices that support social and emotional learning for students. The self-assessment tool, however, goes beyond these 10 teaching practices to include five teacher social and emotional competencies for users to reflect on.

Fundamentals of Learning

Center for Standards and Assessment Implementation | January 2014

This report, part of a series by the Center for Standards and Assessment Implementation, provides a framework to help educators transition to the classroom practices needed to ensure that students meet new college- and career-ready standards.

Teaching the Whole Child: Instructional Practices That Support Social-Emotional Learning in Three Teacher Evaluation Frameworks

Center on Great Teachers and Leaders | January 2014

This Research-to-Practice Brief is the first of its kind to cover the following: Identifies the instructional practices that promote student social-emotional learning, which in turn are critical for student academic learning. Showcases how three popular teacher evaluation frameworks (the Danielson Framework for Teaching, the Classroom Assessment Scoring System observation instrument, and the Marzano observation protocol) embed practices that influence not only student academic learning but also student social and emotional competencies.

Deeper Learning for Every Student Every Day

Getting Smart | January 2014

This report highlights how select schools throughout the nation are working to promote deeper learning through personalized, blended and project-based learning strategies. This report also tackles myths about deeper learning implementation, such as: 1) it costs more than traditional education, 2) requires master teachers, and 3) is only for high performing schools. Lastly, the appendix offers a profile for each school selected for this report.

Developing and Refining Lessons: Planning Learning and Formative Assessment for College and Career Ready Standards

Center on Standards & Assessment Implementation | January 2013

This resource is part of a series produced by the Center for Standards and Assessment Implementation (CSAI) to assist teachers and those who support teachers to plan teaching and learning from College and Career Ready Standards (CCRS) for diverse learners. Four tools are provided to support teachers in the design of daily lessons that support student learning of CCRS. Throughout the resource, these planning tools are previewed in miniature and annotated, in order to help teachers see how the tools relate to the concepts discussed.

The Science of Learning

Deans for Impact | July 1905

The Science of Learning summarizes the existing research from cognitive science related to how students learn, and connects this research to its practical implications for teaching and learning. Building off many efforts that came before it and reflecting the general consensus of the scientific community, The Science of Learning is intended to serve as a resource to teacher-educators, new teachers, and anyone in the education profession who is interested our best scientific understanding of how learning takes place.