Teachers’ applications of design-based learning principles toward creating a common core-aligned curriculum

This study investigated how a group of nine K-12 teachers in a Southern California School District applied Design-Based Learning (DBL) principles when creating a new curriculum to meet the requirements of the new Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Although Design-Based Learning has existed in the field of education for over thirty years, the educational shift from an emphasis on rote learning to deeper thinking has provided a renewed opportunity for this methodology to be widely implemented in United States classrooms, school districts, and states. Investigation of DBL as a curriculum design tool used by teachers at this point in the implementation of state standards is important, in order to assist teachers locally and statewide with accessible strategies. The researcher conducted interviews, evaluated documents, and made two classroom visits in order to observe and describe the use of DBL principles in action and to discover common concepts and themes related to implementation studies and curriculum design.