How Should Personalized Learning Be Implemented?

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How should personalized learning be implemented?

Research and promising practices from across the country emphasize that personalized learning plans must reflect students’ current interests and goals in order to help them select appropriate courses, take part in relevant and engaging career learning experiences, and plan for the future. Students’ college and career interests can change frequently, so the plan needs to be flexible. Consequently, personalized learning should involve an iterative process of identifying goals, planning for those goals, taking part in applicable experiences, assessing skills and interest, reflecting on long-term goals and plans, revising plans, and then documenting the process in a profile or portfolio. The Vermont Agency of Education visualizes personalized learning in the following way:

Figure 2. Vermont Agency of Education personalized learning process Source: Vermont Agency of Education, 2014

Other states’ experience provides three primary lessons about how to implement an effective personalized learning process. First, to complete personalized learning activities, students need support and guidance from an advisor and others, including counselors, teachers, and parents or guardians (Solberg, Gresham & Huang, 2010; Solberg, Phelps, Haakenson, Durham, & Timmons, 2012). Research recommends that schools adopt a “whole-school approach” for implementing the personalized learning process, so advising is not the exclusive responsibility of a
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