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

By Gabriel Reif, Greta Shultz & Steven Ellis
October 12, 2016

This report offers a comprehensive analysis of student-centered learning (SCL) approaches in 12 schools across the New England region, highlighting the richness and complexity of these practices and the impact they have on students, staff, and schools. It details findings from a study conducted by the UMass Donahue Institute (UMDI) for the Nellie Mae Education Foundation (NMEF). It builds on a 2014 study which examined the extent to which SCL practices were being used in schools across New England. In this 2015 study, researchers used a variety of qualitative methods to further probe the richness and complexity of SCL approaches in use across the region. Specifically, the study shows what student-centered practices “look like” in an array of contexts. It also examines the perceived impacts that SCL approaches have on students, staff, and schools, as well as factors that can foster or challenge the implementation of these approaches.

The study will help NMEF understand how to better promote student-centered practices in the region. Additionally, it provides a peek at SCL practices in action for educators working towards implementation in their own schools and districts.

Source Organization: Nellie Mae Education Foundation

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