Personalized Learning Systems and Student Achievement

New York City, NY
New York City iZone

2010 - 2012


What impact do personalized learning systems have on student achievement?


Thirty elementary schools in New York City were randomly assigned a Personalized Learning System to use in two of their third, fourth, or fifth grade classes. New York City selected the platforms from among more than a dozen contenders, and each was aligned with New York state learning standards. Each platform offered core instruction in both math and ELA, but they each differed with respect to how much teacher direction was required for students to progress through the curriculum.


This analysis is ongoing. Interim student assessment data was collected, along with survey data and data drawn from classroom observations. Additionally, usage data from each platform vendor was collected weekly, to monitor whether students were using the systems to the specifications required by the vendors. All of this data will ultimately be analyzed in conjunction with student achievement data provided by the New York City Department of Education to determine the effectiveness of these personalized learning systems and to understand the relative advantages of using student-driven versus teacher-driven platforms.