Date of Award


Document Type

Action Research Project

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education



First Advisor

Kristy Cook




Agency, communication and critical thinking are skills that all students must develop in order to become effective life-long learners. The action research was designed to determine the impact of a Personalized Learning format on students’ learner agency, and their communication and critical thinking skills. The research was conducted with fourth-grade students in a suburban elementary setting, and with sixth-grade students in a suburban middle school setting. The researchers collected before and after treatment data using an agency rubric, and using communication and critical thinking skills rubric. Researchers also collected data to determine student preference for working in a personalized learning format, and teacher-researchers’ feelings, planning time, and number of redirections for students during the four week personalized learning unit. The research showed that students’ exhibited growth in agency, communication and critical thinking skills. The data also showed an overall preference for the format by students, positive teacher-researcher feelings, low overall redirections, and less daily planning time once the unit was initially set up. The teacher-researchers suggest further study into how personalized learning effects different demographics of students such as age, and gender. As well as, investigating the impact of teaching mindset, agency, communication and critical thinking skills to students, teachers and parents.

Included in

Education Commons