Case Studies on Connected Learning

Connected Learning Case Studies are in-depth profiles of established programs, organizations, and educational institutions that demonstrate real-world application of all six connected learning principles.

The Lowline Project on the Lower East Side of Manhattan combines educational outreach, social connectedness, interest-based learning, shared purpose, equity, social connection, and full participation, in their work with students and community members in a reclamation of an abandoned underground terminal as a “green” public space... read more

Phonar, an abbreviation of PHOtography and NARrative, is an in-person course at Coventry University in the UK and an open online course for as many as 35,000 participants around the world who co-create learning communities through a variety of media including blogs and a blog hub, Twitter (using the #phonar hashtag, and a Google+ community... read more

Day[9]TV is a website dedicated to elevating the learning and expertise of the StarCraft community, evidenced by their mantra: "Be a better gamer." At the center of the site is Sean "Day[9]" Plott, who describes his role in the community as that of an educator. Sean utilizes his previous experience as a professional and longtime gamer to help new players develop analytical skills useful for StarCraft as well as other aspects of their daily lives... read more

Digital Storytelling 106--better known as "ds106"--sprouted in 2010 as a computer science class on digital storytelling at University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Founded by Jim Groom, educational technology consultant Alan Levine, and instructional technologists Martha Burtis & Tom Woodard, ds106 has evolved into a model for all instructors and students who aspire to experience, explore, and extend connected learning... read more

Hive Fashion is a MacArthur-funded program for members of the Hive Learning Networks, designed to connect members of the Hive Learning Network in Chicago and New York with fashion industry professionals. The programming makes clear connections from interest-based activities to career-relevant skills, relationships, and pathways... read more

WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) is the largest professional wrestling company in the world, boasting fans in more than 145 countries. The TV shows reach more than 13 million viewers in U.S. alone, and online WWE forums are constantly full of fans fervently discussing the latest outcomes & upcoming shows. The show's choreography, storylines, and characters have even inspired the fan community to create their own text-based "fantasy" wrestling federation... read more

Quest2Learn is a pioneering public school in New York City that offers a promising new model for student engagement. Designed from the ground up by a team of teachers and game designers, and firmly grounded in over 30 years of learning research, Quest to Learn re-imagines school as one node in an ecology of learning that extends beyond the four walls of an institution and engages kids in ways that are exciting, empowering and culturally relevant... read more

The Harry Potter Alliance (HPA) is a nonprofit organization, established in 2005 by activist Andrew Slack. Inspired by the student activist organization “Dumbledore’s Army” in the Harry Potter narratives, the HPA uses parallels from the fictional content world as an impetus for civic action. It mobilizes young people across the U.S. around issues of literacy, equality, and human rights, and in support of charitable causes... read more

YOUmedia is a teen learning space in various libraries, museums, and afterschool spaces throughout the country. This Case Study focuses on the flagship in the Chicago Public Library’s downtown Harold Washington Library Center. YOUmedia is dedicated to the interests of young people, and supported by librarians and mentors with expertise in digital media production. ... read more