Adaptive learning uses technology to facilitate personalized instruction for individual students by applying algorithms and data to adjust the pace and path of learning. The concept of adaptive learning got introduced in the 1970s; however, it became more prevalent during the past decade.
Computerized adaptive learning programs often win technology awards, but they are not proven effective. There is little to no research to support the effectiveness of adaptive learning. While there might be benefits to using adaptive learning, there are also ramifications that educators should consider:
The pandemic exposed additional adaptive learning issues. Data generated by one adaptive learning company revealed that as few 60% of at-risk students logged into their system during last year’s distance learning experience. Researchers from Brown and Harvard Universities (2020) found that learning for some students using one adaptive math program decreased by about half from March through April.
Research-based outcomes from last year’s distance learning situation clearly emphasize the importance of teachers directly teaching their students. The students who experienced teachers providing live instruction online showed more positive learning outcomes.
Standards Plus, an evidence-based program, provided by a nonprofit group of educators, does not rely on adaptive learning. Its research-based structure provides students with live instruction, successful prevention and/or recovery of lost learning, and intervention to students who need it. Standards Plus offers hands-on instruction for all educational models: traditional, hybrid, and virtual.
Recovered Lost Learning Grants up to $3,500 are available to schools to assist schools with the cost of Standards Plus materials. Click here to learn more.