High Tech High Graduate School of Education

Multi-Model Design For Teacher Professional Development.

The High Tech High Graduate School of Education is embedded within an innovative K-12 school and strives to offer progressive education for adults that transforms practice and has a direct impact on K-12 schools. PYD Studio has designed a variety of massive open online courses (MOOCs) that translate the GSE’s in-person educational practices to digital learning platforms. These courses have reached more than 50,000 users all around the world, and continue to provide open access to the GSE’s educators and learning opportunities.

PYD Studio has worked closely with Larry Rosenstock, the founder of HTH, as well as partners including Google Education, UC Berkeley, the Hewlett Foundation, the Raikes Foundation, Coursera and other educational specialists within the HTH organization. The development of these MOOCs represented the first significant translation of HTH’s educational practices to a solely digital environment.

In collaboration with HTH educators and organizational partners, PYD Studio sought to generate multi-modal courses that featured a variety of learning tools, including panel discussions, dynamic readings and assignments, collaborative critique structures for users, digital presentations, and animated videos.

PYD Studio developed ten design elements to guide the development of each of the courses, so that regardless of the content, there was cohesive style and flow. All of the courses included scalable entry options to appeal to different levels of user engagement, connection to important content and expert instruction, and a variety of different high-quality resources.

A project/assignment structure for each of the units created concrete exit outcomes and assessment points, which could be facilitated in a hybrid teaching structure or through virtual presentation and critique. PYD Studio worked to model the online learning structure from the project-based learning pedagogy that is a cornerstone element of High Tech High’s learning philosophy to effectively share the learning for an audience at scale.

The MOOCs provided an opportunity for users to engage with HTH GSE’s unique instructors, rich content and educational philosophy at a distance, as opposed to the in-person options which are limited by proximity, resources, and class sizes. The MOOCs have been used by schools across the country as professional development tools for whole staffs, for personal professional development for school leaders, and for users of all ages to try their hand at project-based learning.

PYD Studio continues to work with the HTH GSE to innovate possibilities for scalable instructional design, and the courses remain available for users to engage with the HTH GSE content and philosophy.


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