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Aurora Institute

Activate Student Agency

Recognizing that learning is done by students—not to them or for them—competency-based schools use strategies to help them build skills and mindsets to direct their own course in life and become lifelong learners.

Summary

When students develop agency, they find purpose in learning, persist through challenges, and manage their own learning. Competency-based schools design environments and experiences that give students opportunities to develop the skills and mindsets needed for a strong sense of agency, such as growth mindset, self-regulation, and perseverance. When students take ownership of their learning, teachers are better able to provide tailored and targeted instruction. The Aurora Institute’s definition of competency-based education says that, “Students are empowered daily to make important decisions about their learning experiences, how they will create and apply knowledge, and how they will demonstrate their learning.”

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