Michael Haran


Copyright 2015

TXu 1-966-650










I grant permission for reproduction of parts, but not in whole, of this project without further authorization and on the condition that the person or agency requesting reproduction absorbs the cost and provide proper acknowledgement of authorship.

August 3, 2016                                                                                                                                           Michael Haran







I would like to thank Dr. Kelly Estrada for her ability to look into my particular education goals, and admit me to the SSU MA CTL program. I would like to thank all of my instructors including Dr. Karen Grady; Dr. Paula Lane; Dr. Maryanne Berry; Dr. Perry Marker; Dr. Adam Mendelson; Dr. Paul Crowley; and Dr. Mark Merickel. I would special like to thank all of my fellow classmates, many of whom are working teachers, for sharing their insights, experiences and anecdotes of their time in K-12 instruction and administration. I would also like to thank Sonoma State University for providing me with the resources and credibility that I needed to complete this program and to go forward with my career goals.




This work is a fieldwork-based case study that is an examination of the concept of Innovationism.

Innovationism is defined as:

Innovation education and learning (Smith, 2009) applies contemporary technology to achieve personalized learning and differentiated teaching. Innovationism builds upon this existing educational methodology by providing a framework to guide the ongoing transformation of American K-12 education into the digital age; is comprised of a systematic blending of objective and subjective learning elements in a methodology, which by intention, avoids the ideological polarization between behaviorally based curriculum and cognitively based curriculum; and is a framework that supports methodologies that make learning joyous, fun, creative, innovative, and playful while, at the same time, inspiring, motivational, engaging, rigorous, enlightening, and reflective.

The purpose of this study is to investigate the concept of Innovationism in an attempt to better understand the elements that make up the framework of Innovationism so that further in-depth study can be constructed to help alleviate some of the problems now facing U. S. K-12 education such as low motivation and engagement. It is believed that if the concept of Innovationism does show such a concept it may help support the development of innovative digital education and learning.

One of the problems this study hoped to address is whether such a concept shows promise to help mitigate the high drop-out rates of underserved populations in the U.S. K-12 public institutions. This mitigation may take place through the inclusion of the discovered concepts of Innovationism in curriculum designed for blended online teaching and learning environments.  The analysis of this field based research was completed using data triangulation. This data analysis methodology was used to better understand the interrelationships of the data gathered from three sources: an extensive review of the related literature, a field study observation of a classroom teacher, and a field study interview of a vice-principal (i.e., administrator). Both of these field based data gathering methodologies (i.e., interview and observation) were completed at a Northern California K-12 public school.

From the data triangulation analysis the findings of this study present the elements discovered representing the concept of Innovationism. These elements may help guide the transformation of teaching and learning, and with the intention to better support the learning of underserved and students at high risk of school dropout.

It was found that the historic existing objective and subjective education philosophies should be combined or used in tandem to create more effective pedagogical methodologies and curricula necessary for contemporary teaching and learning in what is termed by many as the digital age.

There is a need for a follow up comprehensive analysis and development of a prototype curriculum to examine the results of applying innovationist pedagogy and curricula developed using the concept and elements found through this study of the concept of Innovationism.

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