Summer 2018


Capstone Project

Degree Name



Susan Manikowski

Content Expert

Dan Frey


The research question addressed in this project was, how can a high school set up a personalized learning system to re-engage and extend deeper learning opportunities for students? It documents one teacher’s creation of a holistic validation portfolio system that serves as a key vehicle for re-engagement and deeper learning for students who have become disengaged from school. It integrated Stanford’s Design Thinking process to work with a local school community to create a relevant and comprehensive system. The author documents research literature on a variety of pedagogical strategies used to carry-out a comprehensive plan of attack to build learning activities that would serve as evidence of learning in key competency areas in the student’s graduation portfolio. He describes the success in building this approach, and the aspirational intentions of its implementation into a school system to be tested and reexamined. He concludes that with an innovative and student-centered approach of creative pedagogy, students that have struggled to find success at school can be re-engaged in a way that showcases deeper learning results for those students.

Project Type

School-Wide Learning System


At-risk Students, Interdisciplinary Teaching, Social Justice, Competency Based Learning Portfolio System

Included in

Education Commons