The Power of PLTW

Our Impact Hero

20 Years, Millions of Students, Tens of Thousands of Teachers, and This Is Only the Beginning

Our programs provide a transformative learning experience for K-12 students and teachers across the U.S.

PLTW and Student Success

The compelling, hands-on PLTW classroom experience changes the way students experience school, from kindergarten through graduation day.  

Research demonstrates that PLTW students outperform their peers in school, are better prepared for post-secondary studies, and are more likely to consider careers as scientists, technology experts, engineers, mathematicians, healthcare providers, and researchers compared to their non-PLTW peers. Students find PLTW programs relevant, inspiring, engaging, and foundational to their future success. 

PLTW and Teacher Success

Our professional development prepares teachers to infuse a new way of teaching into the classroom and is also known to change the way educators teach non-PLTW classes, as well. Through our programs, we provide the community, support, and resources teachers need to devote more time to inspiring students. In fact, 92 percent of PLTW teachers say they are confident to return to their classrooms and teach their PLTW course after participating in our professional development program.

It's almost impossible to put it into words how much Project Lead The Way has contributed to who I am and who I want to be. It's immediately, from day one, 100 percent different from anything you expect to experience. We had a multitude of opportunities to experience and to see and to take in what biomed really is, as a whole.

- Kelsie O’Brien, PLTW Biomedical Science Alumna United States Air Force Academy

As a teacher, I have been totally reinvigorated by this curriculum. One of the best things for me is seeing just how much kids can do when you challenge them to do it. I have no doubt that the kids who go through this program are better off when they get to college and when they get to jobs because they know how to do things for themselves. They have been challenged – they know how to step up and to take different pieces and parts, put them together, and make something new.

- Becky Howell, PLTW Biomedical Science Master Teacher Lexington Richland School District No 5 | Columbia, South Carolina

How Districts Achieve Results With PLTW Across K-12

Studies show that students form ideas about their interests and abilities as early as second grade1. So the earlier students have hands-on opportunities to explore interests and start building knowledge, skills, and confidence, the better. 

Our pathways empower students to lead their own discovery and develop in-demand, transportable skills starting as early as kindergarten, when PLTW students apply their knowledge in activities such as building digital animations based on their own short stories. As PLTW students progress, they build on their understanding, gain independence in the learning process, and explore career opportunities – putting them on course to thrive, no matter which college and career paths they choose.  

To learn how PLTW is making an impact across K-12 in a variety of school settings, explore the case studies on the right.

[1] Cvencek, D., Meltzoff, A. N. and Greenwald, A. G. (2011), "Math–Gender Stereotypes in Elementary School Children." Child Development, 82: 766–779.

Proven Results

External authorities across the U.S. have researched – and validated – PLTW’s impact. 

Studies have shown: 

  • PLTW contributes to a strong, positive impact on mathematics and science achievement1
  • PLTW has a positive influence on students’ career interest and likelihood to continue their education
  • PLTW offers a pathway to prepare and motivate students to enter careers in science and engineering
  • PLTW high school graduates are nearly three times as likely to major in STEM versus non-PLTW graduates2
  • PLTW students in Texas scored higher on the state’s mathematics assessment and were more prepared for higher education institutions in the state3

[1] Tai, Robert H. (2012). An Examination of Research Literature on PLTW. University of Virginia. Publication by PLTW.
[2] Pike, Gary and Kirsten Robbins (2014). Using Propensity Scores to Evaluate Education Programs. Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis.
[3] Van Overschelde, James P. (Spring 2013) Project Lead The Way Students More Prepared For Higher Education. Texas State University. American Journal of Engineering Education, 4(1).