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 4 min 10 sec ago
52 3,009 66,772 views

Inquiry-Based Learning: Developing Student-Driven Questions

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

Core Strategies for Innovation and Reform in Learning

Last comment 2 weeks 5 days ago
14 279 211,172 views

Ten Tips for Personalized Learning via Technology

Mon, 04/26/2010 - 12:32
52 3,009 66,772 views

5 PBL Pitfalls to Avoid

Tue, 10/24/2017 - 10:24
2 517 7,459 views

Using the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 12:00
278 2,158 views

Browse

Boy wearing headphones standing in class operating a camera on a tripod
Article

Service Learning: Growing Action From the Roots of Passion

In 2007, my co-teacher and I noticed that students felt increasingly like the world was "happening to them," as if they had no ability to affect positive change. This, coupled with the question "When am I going to use this?" led to the inspiration...

4 42 5,115 views
Two students are sitting, and one student is standing, all their hands are touching a popsicle stick bridge that they're gluing together.
Article

Designing Learning That Matters

Foster deep learning experiences for your students by using inquiry, seeking lessons and projects that inspire, always asking "why?", and letting them loose on projects.

9 189 21,335 views
Three students and a teacher are in a green room, setting up the lighting to film.
Article

Studio Schools: Career-Focused Secondary Education

In England, Studio Schools (a model similar to U.S. charter schools) combine academic and vocational pathways with strong employer engagement to make learning relevant.

62 2,115 views
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Article

Finding the Sweet Spot: Creativity, Candy, and Commerce

Through the design, manufacture, and marketing of their own signature chocolate bars, these middle school students brought curiosity and passion to their STEM learning.

3 74 8,784 views
A boy is hunched over a rectangular device on his desk, drawing.
Article

Project-Based Learning and Gamification: Two Great Tastes That Go Great Together

Prepping for a gamified unit of study or project is very different than prepping for your traditional, linear model. Here are some tips on how to do it.

7 628 18,146 views
photo of a girl working with pen and ink
Article

Giving Students Charge of How They Learn

By letting students determine how they learn, via task design, rubric development, and student-led parent conferences, we see high engagement, in-depth inquiry, and quality work.

6 130 9,532 views
photo of a student working on a robotics project
Article

6 Strategies to Truly Personalize PBL

PBL best embodies personalized learning when you know the whole child, align projects with standards, build a supportive infrastructure, assess often, and get out of the way.

1 86 14,046 views

Pages

A female teacher is standing at the left side of a classroom. The classroom is empty, except for a large green and brown rug placed side by side with two benches placed on top of them, and shelves are against the back wall with drums on top of them.
Article

Mindful Facilitation: Don’t Do Something, Just Stand There

To help students find their own way in PBL, use mindfulness techniques like tuning into your own body, nonjudgmental observation, and embracing the "don't know" mind.

12 305 30,921 views
article

Project-Based Learning Research: Annotated Bibliography

Dig deeper into the specific articles, studies, and reports included in our project-based learning research review.

2 62 30,895 views
Establishing Real-World Connections in Projects (Keys to PBL Series Part 1)
video

Establishing Real-World Connections in Projects (Keys to PBL Series Part 1)

Students are more engaged when learning relates directly to the world they live in. See how to extend your projects beyond the classroom walls.

9 45 30,895 views
Infographic showing the value of educating students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
article

Infographic: The Value of a STEM Education

Knowledge in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) can be the key to a successful future. Here's why a STEM education matters and how you can inspire students to pursue STEM careers.

7 1,562 30,148 views
article

Kindergarten Is the Model for Lifelong Learning

Let's keep teaching creativity throughout school and adulthood.

18 1,263 30,059 views
Girl adding blue food coloring to her volcano project
Article

5 PBL Best Practices for Redefining the Teacher's Role

PBL changes a teacher's traditional role through framing the learning, helping students develop ideas, consulting as they revise, and encouraging feedback, reflection, and authentic presentations.

5 562 29,938 views
Building Rigorous Projects That Are Core to Learning (Keys to PBL Series Part 2)
video

Building Rigorous Projects That Are Core to Learning (Keys to PBL Series Part 2)

Project-based learning doesn't mean leaving standards behind. Follow these tips to plan projects that challenge your students and align with core learning goals.

3 23 29,899 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