George Lucas Educational Foundation

Project-Based Learning

Project-based learning is a dynamic classroom approach in which students actively explore real-world problems and challenges and acquire a deeper knowledge.

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Overview

What is Project-Based Learning?

Project-based learning is a dynamic approach to teaching in which students explore real-world problems and challenges. With this type of active and engaged learning, students are inspired to obtain a deeper knowledge of the subjects they're studying. Watch an introduction video.

History

What's the History of PBL?

Confucius and Aristotle were early proponents of learning by doing. Socrates modeled how to learn through questioning, inquiry, and critical thinking -- all strategies that remain very relevant in today's PBL classrooms. Learn more.

Experts

What the Experts Say

"One of the major advantages of project work is that it makes school more like real life." --Sylvia Chard, University of Alberta See what other experts say.

Research

Research: Studies on PBL Success

Did you know PBL students remember learned content for longer periods of time? Did you know PBL students view themselves as better prepared in problem solving and perform better in tasks that emphasize understanding and application of knowledge? Dig deeper.

Discuss

Ten Tips for Personalized Learning via Technology

Last comment 2 days 9 hours ago
49 3,009 66,772 views

Inquiry-Based Learning: Developing Student-Driven Questions

Last comment 2 weeks 1 day ago
5 1,179 93,689 views

Core Strategies for Innovation and Reform in Learning

Last comment 2 weeks 1 day ago
14 279 218,428 views

Using the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 12:00
2 1,378 views

5 PBL Pitfalls to Avoid

Tue, 10/24/2017 - 10:24
2 502 7,235 views

Ten Tips for Personalized Learning via Technology

Mon, 04/26/2010 - 12:32
49 3,009 66,772 views

Resources

We Love PBL Pinterest Board

Visit a curated collection of resources on project-based learning -- including tips and tricks for newbies and veterans -- on Edutopia's pinboard on Pinterest.

1 6,727 views
Screenshot of PBL guide

High Tech High’s Teacher’s Guide to PBL

Download this teacher’s guide to project-based learning to explore great sample projects and review PBL basics.

2 1 7,225 views

Browse

A teen girl examines a plant in class.
Article

Using the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals

Project-based learning with these guidelines from the United Nations gives students a local and global focus for their work.

2 1,378 views
A teacher and students gather around a table in their classroom.
Article

Getting Started With Project-Based Learning (Hint: Don’t Go Crazy)

A handful of tips to help teachers ease into PBL without getting overwhelmed.

401 92,570 views
Students work together on a circuitry project in class.
Article

5 PBL Pitfalls to Avoid

Project-based learning is powerful but complex, so we have solutions to some common problems teachers may encounter.

2 502 7,235 views
Students on a field trip with their teacher
Article

A Starter’s Guide to PBL Fieldwork

Five tips to help you get started with taking students out for fieldwork—a powerful component of project-based learning.

856 4,590 views
Students collaborate on an environmental project.
Article

Helping Students Become Engaged Citizens

Project ideas to help your students realize the impact they can have on their community and beyond.

2 1,059 7,341 views
A group of teachers watch as a fellow teacher makes a presentation on a project.
Article

Get a Taste of PBL Before Your Students Do

Project slices—condensed project-based learning for teachers—give educators a student’s perspective on what it’s like to do a project.

1 622 7,998 views
A group of students discuss a driving question with their teacher.
Article

In Search of the Driving Question

Coming up with the driving question in project-based learning is often the hard part, so we’ve got some ideas to help you craft a great one.

3 547 9,224 views

Pages

Article

Twenty Ideas for Engaging Projects

Twenty ideas for getting engaging projects going in your classroom.

67 542,531 views
Article

Designing Science Inquiry: Claim + Evidence + Reasoning = Explanation

Edutopia blogger Eric Brunsell breaks scientific inquiry down into the basic CER model and offers suggestions for introducing it to students.

4 73 246,009 views
An young girl with rainbow-knitted headphones is sitting at a table with her female teacher. They're both looking at a long, thin sheet of paper, and the young girl is holding the tip of the pencil against the paper, pointing at something.
Article

6 Strategies for Differentiated Instruction in Project-Based Learning

Project-based learning (PBL) naturally lends itself to differentiated instruction. By design, it is student-centered, student-driven, and gives space for teachers to meet the needs of students in a variety of ways. PBL can allow for effective differentiation...

361 244,999 views
article

Ten Steps to Better Student Engagement

Project-learning teaching strategies can also improve your everyday classroom experience.

82 877 233,859 views
article

Core Strategies for Innovation and Reform in Learning

See an overview of Edutopia's core strategies, including project-based learning, social-emotional learning, comprehensive assessment, technology integration, integrated studies and teacher development.

14 279 218,428 views
Boy wearing glasses building with legos
Article

Project-Based Learning vs. Problem-Based Learning vs. X-BL

John Larmer of the Buck Institute for Education clears up any confusion on the difference between project-based learning, problem-based learning, and whatever-else-based learning.

30 5,822 181,435 views
Table covered with newspaper and teacher showing something to a boy; girl wearing gloves handling a trout; boy with safety googles looking on
article

Project-Based Learning Research Review

Studies have proven that when implemented well, project-based learning (PBL) can increase retention of content and improve students' attitudes towards learning, among other benefits. Edutopia's PBL research review explores the vast body of research on the...

1 702 144,748 views

Pages

Girls testing wing strength using plywood
Article

Project-Based Learning Professional Development Guide

An overview of the Edutopia professional development guide for teaching how to use project-based learning in the classroom.

15 214 61,248 views
Article

Project Learning: Model Schools with Solutions

Project learning encourages students to explore real-world challenges while developing cross-curriculum skills in small collaborative groups. Edutopia has visited many schools that have implemented project-based learning programs -- here are some of the best...

1 2 4,539 views