Personalized learning comes with many names: individualized learning, differentiated instruction, universal design for learning, and many more. And while each of these terms does mean something slightly different, the goal of helping all students succeed is the same. EdWeek provided the following insight on personalized learning,
“In the diverse and ever-changing world of educational technology, the term “personalized learning” seems to be everywhere, though there is not yet a shared understanding of what it means.
“Many school officials, and companies scrambling to do business with them, use that omnipresent phrase to refer to efforts to tailor lessons to students of different ability levels—an appealing concept, given the pressures schools face to raise the achievement of students coming to academic topics from very different starting points.”
This article is from 2014, but still rings very true. Personalized learning is an omnipresent term that seems to have ever changing definitions, especially when it comes to determining how to implement it in the classroom.
iNACOL recently released a report on What’s Possible with Personalized Learning? According to the report, personalized learning models can have varied approaches, however there are four common characteristics:
So how can we get teachers to implement these in the classroom?
Professional development, practice, and collaboration with peers are what will empower teachers to successfully personalize instruction. However, PD that truly enables teachers to implement personalized learning cannot be sit-and-get professional development. Adjectives used in the ESSA definition of PD, such as classroom-focused, job-embedded, and collaborative, require PD to be more actionable than ever. Educators need to learn what a theory is, given guidance to put it into practice, as well as learn from other educators on what is and isn’t working to come up with innovative solutions to every day issues.
Hoonuit provides several courses in our learning framework, LearnIt. DoIt. ShareIt. ProveIt., built to empower educators to personalize learning in their classrooms. See a list of courses as well as preview our Universal Design for Learning module.