Instructional Approaches to Customized Learning

EDU 520

Course Description

This course provides an understanding of the use of online learning, blended learning, and flipped instruction to not only allow students to receive instruction when they are ready, but also to free up the teacher facilitator to work with individuals or small groups. Students will also evaluate the use of Project-Based Learning in promoting problem solving and interactive, multidisciplinary instruction.

Please understand that Customized Learning uses a combination of instructional approaches. It is not all of any one of these pieces. I have seen too many teachers try to turn this strictly into online learning. While that is the first unit we are going to go through, it is not the entire course!

You will find the navigation to the units here:


Participants will:

  • Understand the difference between synchronous and asynchronous online learning.

  • Evaluate different online learning platforms.

  • Start thinking about the elements that go into effective online instruction.

  • Understand what makes an activity or assignment and active learning piece and how to engage students in the learning.

  • Understand copyright implications for both students and teacher.

  • Examine course for interaction and communication.

  • Understand how to blend classroom learning, using what is best for learners.

  • Develop an understanding of flipped classroom.

  • Identify the elements of the flipped classroom.

  • Explore tools to create videos.
    Create a video for use with students.

  • Plan meaningful lessons.

  • Compare the pros and cons of Flipped Learning.

  • Identify the basic elements of a Project-Based Unit and evaluate how it might be used in supporting a student centered classroom.

  • Evaluate options for planning documents and decide on one to use as your test planning document to organize your Project-Based Unit.

  • Become familiar with a new tech tool that will facilitate the customization of the project-based approach.

  • Recognize the elements that support and promote student inquiry and envision how they might be implemented with your students.

  • Examine current brain research concerning the use of project-based learning.

  • Explore a technology tool to incorporate within the project-based process
    Become familiar with assessment options within a project-based context.

  • Analyze rubrics related to performance tasks and project creation

  • Integrate technology integration options for project-based learning

  • Review the recommended steps for project-based Lesson implementation

  • Become familiar with LMS (Learning management system) for managing classroom project-based student data.

  • Develop an understanding of the Cornell Note Taking method.

  • Explore mastery learning vs. traditional grading.


Bergmann, Jonathan, and Aaron Sams. Flip Your Classroom: Reach Every Student in Every Class Every Day. Eugene, Or.: International Society for Technology in Education, 2012. Print.

Krauss, Jane, and Suzanne K. Boss. Thinking through Project-based Learning: Guiding Deeper Inquiry. N.p.: Corwin, 2013. Print.

Course Outline

I. Online Learning
           A. Learning Environments
           B. Active Learning and Real-World Application
           C. Online Learning Assessment
           D. Differentiation
II. Blended Learning
           A. Understanding
           B. Mobilizing
           C. Designing
           D. Implementing
III. Flipped Classroom
           A. Introduction
                    1. Explore tools to create videos
                    2. Create a video for use with students
                    3. Explore planning a more meaningful lesson with extra classroom time
           B. Implementing Flipped
                    1. Compare the pros and cons of Flipped Learning
                    2. Create a video and detailed lesson plan for use with students\
           C. Assessment for Flipped
                    1. Cornell Note Taking
                    2. Mastery Learning vs. Traditional Grading
IV.  Project-Based Learning
           A. Introduction
                    1. Planning Document Selection
                    2. Teacher vs Student Centered
                    3. Technology Evaluation
           B. PBL Essentials
                    1. Inquiry Based Atmosphere
                    2. Brain Research
                    3. Getting their attention
                    4. Expanding the technology toolbox
           C. Assessment in PBL
                    1. Explore existing Rubrics
                    2. Explore sample Units
           D. Implementing PBL
                    1. LMS exploration
                    2. Project Steps