Preparing to Lead in a Project-Based World

Authored by Tom Vander Ark and Mary Ryerse

Download the Full Paper

Download the Leader Quick Start Guide

Throughout the year long thought leadership campaign–It’s a Project-Based World–we’ve shared the need for students, leaders and teachers to acknowledge that we are living in an increasingly project-based world. Project-based learning (PBL) requires unique instructional skills, with teachers serving as designers, coaches and advisors to ensure high-quality projects that engage and challenge students.

PBL provides immense opportunities for learners to grow and to practice pursuing deeper learning outcomes. These experiences and related skills will be particularly important in the new economy they’ll face when graduating and heading to college or a career. But where and how do leaders support PBL? What’s needed from them?

Leaders in a project-based environment must:

  • Work effectively with others.
  • Understand the implications of new technologies.
  • Assume diverse roles to generate collective action.
  • Spearhead their growth and the growth of others.

In Preparing to Lead in a Project-Based World, authors Tom Vander Ark and Mary Ryerse highlight the way leaders from education, business and the third sector can support deeper learning. They make the case that leadership development can be aligned to–and modeled after–the types of project-based and deeper learning environments we seek to create for students.

The publication shares how technology (particularly artificial intelligence) is exponentially changing the learning landscape, how the roles for education and community leaders are being redefined accordingly, and how individuals and groups can prepare to lead in this increasingly project-based world.

The authors answer questions such as:

  1. How is technology elevating the importance of project-based learning?
  2. What are the skills, dispositions, mindsets and roles of leaders that are needed in a project-based world?
  3. How can leaders from across sectors (business, education and community/nonprofit,) collaborate to create a more equitable future for all young people amidst a changing world?
  4. How can I spearhead my own growth as a leader? How can I support the growth of others?

In addition to the paper, we’ve also released a quick start guide for leaders that explores the 7 keys to leadership development for PBL.

Download the Paper

Download the Quick Start Guide

This publication is the final in a three-part series. To learn more about preparing students and teachers check out:

Getting Smart Staff

The Getting Smart Staff believes in learning out loud and always being an advocate for things that we are excited about. As a result, we write a lot. Do you have a story we should cover? Email [email protected]

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