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TitleAn Analysis Of Personalized Learning Systems For Navy Training And Education Settings
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Table of Contents
                            NAVAL
POSTGRADUATE
SCHOOL
I. introduction
	A. Background
	B. Research Questions
	C. Organization
II. Literature Review
	A. Cultural shifts and drivers for change
	B. Learning Theory and PL treatments
		1. Learning Science
		2. Aptitude Variables
			a. Cognition and Learning Styles
			b. Prior Knowledge and Learning Speed
			c. Affection and Learning
	C. Benefits of Personalized Learning
		1. Cost Savings
		2. Modernized Skillset
	D. Case Studies
		1. Teach to One
		2. Continued Progress
		3. Project RED
	E. Chapter Summary
III. Technology to Enable Personalized Learning
	A. Types of technology-based instruction
		1. DOD-Interactive Multimedia Instruction (IMI)
		2. Advanced Distributed Learning
		3. Intelligent Tutoring Systems
		4. Sharable Content Object Reference Model
		5. Learning Management Systems
		6. Digital Teaching Platform
		7. Synthetic Learning Environments
	B. Challenges and Opportunities
	C. Chapter Summary
IV. Methodology: Cost AnalysIs
	A. Cost Studies
	B. Types of Cost Studies
	C. Determining Cost of Instructional Programs
	D. Theoretical Model
	E. Opportunity Costs
	F. Determining the Benefits of Instructional Programs
		1. Effect Size
		2. Kirkpatrick Model
	G. Chapter Summary
V. Digital Tutor Case Study
	A. Institute for Defense Analyses Report
	B. Naval Education and Training Command Report
	C. Chapter Summary
VI. Conclusion and Recommendations
List of References
initial distribution list
                        
Document Text Contents
Page 1

NAVAL
POSTGRADUATE

SCHOOL
MONTEREY, CALIFORNIA

THESIS

Approved for public release. Distribution is unlimited.

AN ANALYSIS OF PERSONALIZED LEARNING
SYSTEMS FOR NAVY TRAINING AND EDUCATION

SETTINGS

by

Nathaniel J. Robbins

December 2016

Thesis Advisor: Jesse Cunha
Co-Advisor: Marigee Bacolod

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for PL in a K-12 setting, and is currently expanding to more schools nationwide for

further development and testing.

2. Continued Progress

In a similar study, RAND Corporation, in partnership with the Bill and Melinda

Gates Foundation, evaluated 62 K-12 schools that had implemented a wide variety of PL

approaches (Pane, Steiner, Baird, & Hamilton, 2015). While no standard methods of PL

were imposed on the schools, a framework of five strategies was common across the

group: learner profiles to understand individual differences, personal learning paths to

allow student control, competency-based progression for self-paced achievement, flexible

learning environments to enable a multi-modal instruction, and emphasis on college and

workforce preparedness. The overall effect size found across the 62 study schools was

.19 in reading and .27 in math. While this is a statistically positive result, it falls short of

Hattie’s (1999) average intervention effect of .40 standard deviations, suggesting that

there are other, more effective approaches that might have been implemented. Of course,

until the costs of all such programs are weighed along with these benefits, we must

reserve judgment as to their relative values. Additionally, because the PL practices varied

so widely across the schools, it is impossible to determine whether any specific approach

types or particular use of technology had a more positive or negative effect, potentially

skewing the overall result. One important qualitative observation from the study was the

general lack of adoption of true self-pacing and competency-based advancement, in part

due to pressure to maintain traditional grade-level structure and content in order to meet

externally controlled standardized test requirements (Pane et al., 2015). This statement

highlights outdated policies and organizational norms, which pose major barriers to

implementing effective PL systems in any traditional educational environment.

3. Project RED

Project RED was a large-scale research effort across 997 K-12 schools in 49

states that began in 2010 with the aim of discovering how educational technology,

particularly computer access for every student, might improve learning outcomes while

remaining cost effective (Greaves, Hayes, Wilson, Gielniak, & Peterson, 2012). The

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study found that technology, when properly implemented, improved learning outcomes

while saving money for the schools. High-stakes test scores and graduation rates were

significantly higher, while dropout rates and disciplinary actions were lower when the

ratio of students to computers was 1:1. The greatest returns were realized when the

technology was fully integrated into curricula and used on a daily basis. The authors also

found that school administrators’ leadership and support were critical to the success of

any implementation effort. Although this program did not claim PL as its primary

objective, the authors did feel that individualized instruction was the most significant

reason for integrating technology into education:

Individualized instruction is perhaps the most important use model of
technology in education. Whether advanced or remedial, individualized
instruction allows students to learn at their own pace and engage in
learning at exactly the right entry point. Technology-based learning
solutions provide almost limitless opportunities for personalization. If one
approach is not working for a student, alternatives can easily be tried that
are better suited to a student’s individual learning style or experiences.
Because students are in active control of their learning, they are more
likely to stay on task. (Greaves et al., 2012, p. 16)

Though Project RED, and the other similar programs discussed have been focused on K-

12 education, there is considerable evidence that PL does have potential meaningful

benefits. If properly implemented with the right technology and with buy-in at all levels,

PL has the power to transform the notion of education, as we know it.

E. CHAPTER SUMMARY

Individualized approaches to teaching and learning can be traced to the very

origins of formalized education, more than two thousand years ago. Though it has long

been understood that a one-on-one relationship between teacher and pupil is optimal for

learning success, the model is generally not scalable, and has succumbed over time to

more cost-efficient methodologies. As technology advances and scientific understanding

of how we think and learn has grown, so has an interest in reviving the concept of PL.

Technology-enabled PL promises not only to improve learning outcomes by matching

teaching strategies, methods, and timing to individual student differences, but it seeks to

do so more affordably than traditional classroom learning. Thus far, the evidence is

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INITIAL DISTRIBUTION LIST

1. Defense Technical Information Center
Ft. Belvoir, Virginia

2. Dudley Knox Library
Naval Postgraduate School
Monterey, California

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