According to Tracy Gray, managing director of Education for the American Institutes for Research (AIR), PowerUp has been developed and field tested over the past four years by a team of educators and researchers with expertise in professional development, special education, curriculum development and research.

“Our goal is to provide evidence-based practices that support teachers, professional development coordinators, and school leaders in the delivery of high quality instruction, supported by technology to enhance teaching and learning for all students,” she explained.”

PowerUp is comprehensive, addressing both instructional issues within classrooms and broader organizational issues in schools. It provides valuable information for leaders and administrators to support effective school-wide technology implementation.

The website was developed by a multidisciplinary team of experts in education, technology, differentiated instruction, UDL, and special education at the Center for Technology Implementation, operated by AIR in collaboration with the Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC) and the Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST).

AIR is one of the largest behavioral and social science research organizations in the world. Its goal is to use the most effective ideas and approaches to enhance everyday life in the areas of education, assessment, human development, international development, and work development.

What you can find on the website

1. Instructional strategy guides: The Strategy Guides provide educators with information on how to use and differentiate evidence-based instructional strategies with technology aligned with the Common Core. At present, there are ten English Language Arts (ELA) topics and seven Math topics.

Navigation for the Strategy Guides allows educators to explore:

  • Overview: A brief introduction with an accompanying slide show
  • Common Core State Standards: Relevant standards that align to evidence-based practice in ELA or math
  • Teach With Tech: Evidence-based practices, recommendations for technology enhancements, and suggestions for differentiating instruction
  • Lessons in Action: Descriptions of classrooms where teaching and learning exemplifies the use of UDL and differentiated instruction
  • Multimedia: Slide shows and Quick Views
  • Supporting Research: Relevant research with citations and brief annotations
  • PD Support Materials: Includes directions and handouts to promote collaborative learning

2. Tech Matters—the PowerUp Blog: Return again and again to find frequently updated technology information about trends, free apps, school-wide initiatives, ways to personalize instruction, and how to be a technology leader. Educators can learn how to maximize limited technology funds and resources.

(Next page: How to integrate tech and the implementation process)