Instruction and Assessment in a Personalized Proficiency-Based System, Hamilton, Spring 2020

Dates/Times: January 29 - May 13, 2020. In-person sessions at White River Valley Supervisory Union on January 29, March 18, April 15 and May 13 from 4:30-6:30.
Instructor: Gabe Hamilton
Credits: 3 graduate credits
Cost: $375

Course Description

Fully implementing personalized proficiency-based learning, instruction, and assessment takes time.  PBL is a major structural shift that, potentially, requires teachers to overhaul aspects of their instruction and assessment practices.  This course aims to provide time and support to develop and/or refine assessment as well as work on instructional strategies that respond to the needs of learners.

Audience: Teachers, Coaches, Coordinators, Admin

Course Goals & Objectives

Course Goals: The underlying purpose of this course is to build teacher capacity to implement personalized proficiency-based learning practices effectively and coherently in their classrooms. This course is taught in a hybrid fashion with online discussions and face-to-face sessions to provide teachers the flexibility to work on their own schedule.  The course assignments are structured so that the products created can be directly applied to their own classroom.  As much as possible, teachers have the ability to “personalize” the learning experience to meet their own needs. 

Course Objectives: (Learning Targets)

Learning Target #1:  I can describe and explain the basic philosophy of proficiency-based learning.

Learning Target #2: I can make connections between UDL and PBL and describe how aspects of both can be used to improve daily instruction and curriculum design.

Learning Target #3: I can design lessons that include a focus on personalization and understand how this differs from differentiated instruction.

Learning Target #4: I can pre-plan scaffolding and interventions that anticipate the support I may need to provide for some learners.

Learning Target #5: I can design assessments that cultivate learning through formative and summative purpose.

Learning Target #6: I can devise strategies to interpret and communicate learning/progress in a timely and effective way.

Learning Target #7: I can design assessment cycles that can be personalized and include opportunities for remediation and extension.

Learning Target #8: I can integrate transferable skills into my instruction and assessment in a way that provides opportunities for feedback and growth.

Required Texts

Costs for required readings, if any, are not included in the course cost.

Novak, K. (2016). UDL Now!: A Teacher’s Guide to Applying Universal Design For Learning in

Today’s Classrooms. Wakefield, MA: CAST, Inc.

Erkens, C., Schimmer, T., & Vagle, N. (2017). Essential Assessment: Six Tenets for Bringing

Hope, Efficacy, and Achievement to the Classroom. Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree


Course Schedule

This is a general sequence that will inform discussion prompts and readings, but work completion can be personalized for individual needs & schedules.



Learning Target

Week 1-2

Framing a Personalized Proficiency Based Learning System

LT 1

Week 3

Universal Design for Learning in PBL

LT 2

Week 4

Student Investment & Engagement: Personalization

LT 3

Week 5

Scaffolding & Interventions

LT 4

Week 6-7

Assessment Purpose

LT 5

Week 8

Communication & Interpretation of Learning

LT 6

Week 9

Assessment Architecture

LT 7

Week 10

Remediation & Reassessment

LT 7

Week 11

Student Role in Assessment

LT 7

Week 12

Transferable Skills

LT 8

Week 13

No Readings or Discussion (Collaborative Sharing)

Portfolios DUE

For course information contact:

Gabe Hamilton
(802) 453-2333 x2016

For registration information and assistance contact:

Bethany Sprague
(802) 468-1325

Register online now!