The LEAP Learning Framework™ is the foundation for all of our work.

The LEAP Learning Framework is the guiding vision for LEAP Innovations. Our definition of personalized learning lies within the construct of its four core components.


Personalized learning is focused on, led with and demonstrated by the learner, and is connected to career-relevant, real-world skills and opportunities.

The LEAP Learning Framework Components

Learner Focused

Learners are empowered to holistically understand their needs, strengths, and interests.


  • Deepen their understanding of themselves holistically, including:
    • academic needs, strengths, and interests
    • physical and mental health
    • social and emotional learning
    • cognitive skills (i.e. focus, working memory)
    • identity and culture
    • social and community context
  • Experience learning that is relevant, challenging, contextualized, and designed for their individual needs, strengths, and interests

Learner Led

Learners are entrusted to take ownership of their learning.


  • Articulate their needs, strengths, and interests
  • Partner in setting their learning goals
  • Partner in shaping their learning pathways and experiences
  • Assess, monitor, and reflect on their progress
  • Advocate for needed support from teachers, peers, technology, and other sources

Learner Demonstrated

Learners can progress at their own pace based on demonstrated mastery.


  • Begin at a challenging level appropriate to their prior knowledge and learning needs
  • Receive feedback on effort, process, and mastery throughout every learning experience
  • Advance or go deeper upon demonstration of mastery
  • Demonstrate learning in multiple ways
  • Receive recognition based on demonstrated mastery, not time

Learner Connected

Learning transcends location in relevant and valued ways, connected to families, educators, communities, and networks.


  • Collaborate with peers, family, educators, and others
  • Cultivate meaningful relationships
  • Advance opportunities through connections
  • Engage in real-world experiences to develop:
    • Academic skills and knowledge
    • Community and civic engagement
    • Workplace experience
  • Earn valued recognition for all learning, regardless of where and when it happens

About the Learning Framework

Our work at LEAP Innovations centers around helping make modern learning science and research actionable in real-world classrooms, and the LEAP Learning Framework is our main resource for doing this. It details the key pillars of a personalized learning experience and is supplemented by tangible strategies to help teachers deliver them.

Since 2014, we’ve built out and refined the Learning Framework with structured research reviews and the invaluable contributions of a diverse range of experts from around the education field. It guides all our work to catalyze and ignite education transformation.



LEAP Innovations is founded

Our work in classrooms begins, with many teachers seeking more tangible strategies for guiding change to their personalized learning practice.


LEAP begins development of the LEAP Learning Framework

Partnering with LEAP, American Institutes for Research (AIR) examines existing evidence related to personalized learning. LEAP and AIR co-facilitate critiques with a diverse team of learning scientists, national experts, researchers, and educators.


LEAP releases the Learning Framework

The first Edition features guidelines for the Learner Focused, Led and Demonstrated components. LEAP begins creating guidelines for the Learner Connected component. LEAP also begins development of the Personalized Learning Teacher and Student Surveys with AIR.


LEAP expands the Learning Framework

The updated Edition introduces guidelines and strategies for the Learner Connected component.  Amelia Peterson, a Fellow at Harvard University’s Education ReDesign Lab, begins a review of the Framework’s base of evidence, exploring over 600 studies.


External Review of the LEAP Learning Framework begins

Inspired by the medical field’s AGREE II methodology, Chris Dede of Harvard University’s Learning Technologies, Technology, Innovation, and Education Program and Edith Gummer, the Executive Director of Data Strategy for the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University, lead the External Review.


Dede and Gummer complete the External Review

58 participants—ranging from researchers to educators to policymakers—from 23 states critique the Learning Framework. Expert panels affirm the rigor of its development process.


LEAP to roll out 2020 Edition of Learning Framework and Educator User Guide

The evolved Components and Guidelines in the 2020 Edition stem directly from the Dede and Gummer External Review. Aligned with these, the User Guide will help educators add depth and context to classroom strategy development.

Guiding Principles

The LEAP Learning Framework is grounded in three evidence-based, guiding principles:

Every learner can succeed with support that’s customized to the child’s interests and needs

When they are engaged in a more personalized manner, students will often master content well above curriculum standards or developmental guidelines. We can and should reframe how educators set and raise expectations for our students.

Every learner brings strengths and talents to the classroom

The diverse knowledge bases, life experiences, languages, and cultures of children are powerful assets for their learning—as well as the learning of those around them—and need to be leveraged as such.

Learner agency is essential

Our world of work increasingly requires more leadership, agility, and self-direction. At an early age, we must inspire our students to assume responsibility of their own learning, and help co-design it.

Additional Resources

The LEAP Learning Framework Overview

The LLF Overview takes an in-depth look at what the Learning Framework is and the need from which it emerged.
Download the Overview

Research Snapshot

Review the Research Snapshot for the evidence behind the Learning Framework's vision for personalized learning.
Download the Snapshot

LEAP Learning Framework External Review:

Review the extensive 2019 External Review led by Chris Dede and Edith Gummer and the expert panel findings.
Download the Review