Date of Conferral

2014

Degree

Doctor of Information Technology (D.I.T.)

School

Education

Advisor

Dr. Heather Miller

Abstract

Implementation of project-based learning (PBL) has contributed to increases in students’ retention of concepts, engagement, and academic success. The problem for this study is that teachers’ and administrators’ experiences and perceptions have not been sought regarding the integration of PBL in the classroom at the school district. The purpose of this qualitative instrumental case study was to gain a deeper insight into the experiences of teachers and administrators implementing PBL. Centered on the theory of constructivism, the research questions focused on 10 teachers’ and 5 administrators’ experiences integrating PBL. Face-to-face interviews with participants and 10 classroom observations were conducted. Inductive coding and thematic analysis were used with the collected data. Results indicated that teachers perceived several benefits with PBL such as improved students’ retention and engagement, academic success, and 21st-century skills and a few challenges such as time consuming lesson planning and delivery, and lack of resources and materials. Observations showed improvement in students’ behavior and engagement. Administrators also indicated similar benefits, agreed that there was lack of resources, and perceived challenges to be teachers’ lack of willingness and openness to implement PBL. Recommendations were that schools or district develop accountability measures, best strategies, and curriculum alignment for standards-based PBL. Findings may contribute to positive social change by bringing greater awareness to local educators of the benefits and challenges surrounding implementing PBL. School administrators can foster a school culture and environment for student learning in which teachers are supported and lesson planning and collaboration are prioritized.