The Foundation's research contributes to greater understanding among educators, practitioners and policymakers of the change required to reshape our education system.

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The Landscape Analysis of Personalized Learning in Massachusetts

Massachusetts Personalized Learning Edtech (MAPLE) Consortium

October 2017

What does personalized learning look like in Massachusetts public schools?

Tags: Massachusetts, personalization

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

Our Piece of the Pie

May 2016

This brief outlines policy recommendations for supporting student-centered learning at the local, state, and federal level.

Tags: Community Voice & Engagement, personalization, policy

A Qualitative Study of Student-Centered Learning Practices in New England High Schools

Gabriel Reif, M.Ed., Greta Shultz, Ed.D. and Steven Ellis, M.P.A.

April 2016

What does student-centered learning look like in New England high schools?

Tags: Competency-Based Education, personalization, Student Voice & Agency

The Connected Classroom: Understanding the Landscape of Technology for Student-Centered Learning

The Nellie Mae Education Foundation and Parthenon-EY

December 2015

How can educators leverage technology supports to support student-centered learning?

Tags: Personalization, Technology

Educator Competencies for Personalized, Learner-Centered Teaching

Jobs for the Future and the Council of Chief State School Officers

August 2015

This document serves 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.

Tags: Competency-Based Education, Curriculum and Instruction, Personalization

A State Policy Framework for Scaling Personalized Learning


August 2015

States can play a big role in helping districts shape conditions to scale up personalized learning.

Tags: Personalization, Policy

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

Chris Sturgis

June 2015

This paper describes effective strategies to convert traditional, one-size-fits-all models of education into more personalized, competency-based learning environments to meet students' needs.

Tags: Competency-Based Education, Curriculum and Instruction, personalization

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

Nellie Mae Education Foundation

April 2015

A series of studies commissioned by Nellie Mae examine how to ensure that all students – especially those who are underserved – get an opportunity to reach college and career readiness.

Tags: 21st Century Skills, College and Career Readiness, Curriculum and Instruction, Equity, Personalization, Technology

Blended Instruction

EDUCATION CONNECTION and Education Development Center (EDC)

April 2015

A student-centered approach to blended instruction can have a positive impact on achievement and 21st century skills, and may narrow the achievement gap for underserved populations.

Tags: 21st Century Skills, Curriculum and Instruction, Equity, Learning Time, Personalization, Technology

Maximizing Competency Education and Blended Learning: Insights from Experts

Susan Patrick and Chris Sturgis

March 2015

Blended learning can be a powerful tool in a competency-based curriculum, allowing for deeper, more personalized student learning.

Tags: Competency-Based Education, Curriculum and Instruction, Personalization

Building Multiple Pathways to a High School Diploma: A Cost Study of Non-Traditional Academic Options

The Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy and MassBudget

October 2014

Massachusetts is home to a number of successful schools and programs that use time and other resources flexibly to meet the needs of diverse learners, but these programs remain largely isolated from each other.

Tags: College & Career Readiness, Personalization

Personal Opportunity Plans

Carol Miller Lieber

July 2014

Personal Opportunity Plans can help increase school attendance and achievement, graduation rates, and even postsecondary program enrollment and persistence.

Tags: Personalization

Leadership in Action: What Are Personal Learning Plans?

New England Secondary School Consortium

May 2014

Personal learning plans can bring greater focus, direction, and purpose to the decisions students make about their high school education.

Tags: Curriculum & Instruction, Personalization

High Tech High Network: Student-Centered Learning in Action

David Stephen and Eve Goldberg

August 2013

High Tech High is using student-centered approaches to equip students with 21st century skills.

Tags: 21st Century Skills, Competency-Based Assessment, Curriculum & Instruction, Personalization

The Promise of Extended Learning Opportunities: New, Powerful, and Personalized Options for High School Students

Nicholas C. Donohue

February 2013

NMEF President & CEO Nicholas C. Donohue describes the potential that expanded learning opportunities can bring to a learning ecosystem.

Tags: Community Voice & Engagement, Learning Time, Personalization, Youth Development

Latino/a and Black Students and Mathematics

Rochelle Gutierrez and Sonya E. Irving

July 2012

Many students, particularly underserved students, feel disconnected from mathematics, which is often taught without context or relation to everyday life. This 2012 report reviews research on the scope of mathematics in an effort to broaden understanding of where, when, and for whom math happens and the implications for teaching and learning.

Tags: Curriculum & Instruction, Equity, Personalization

Personalization in Schools

Susan Yonezawa, Larry McClure, and Makeba Jones

July 2012

Student-teacher relationships are at the heart of personalization in schools, and play an important role in learning, especially for underserved students.

Tags: Curriculum & Instruction, Personalization, Youth Development

Teachers at Work: Six Exemplars of Everyday Practice

Barbara Cervone and Kathleen Cushman

March 2012

How do we challenge students to do their best? This report highlights six deeper learning schools where teachers and school practices address this question.

Tags: Curriculum & Instruction, Learning Time, Personalization, Teachers & School Leaders

Leadership in Action: What Should a 21st Century High School Look Like?

New England Secondary School Consortium

April 2011

Textbooks, chalkboards, and desks were the hallmarks of 20th century schooling. Today’s best schools are borderless community learning centers.

Tags: 21st Century Skills, College & Career Readiness, Personalization