You will develop a focused inquiry project based on a problem or issue of instructional leadership practice in your home school or district. Plans for the inquiry project will begin during the first year of the program in the context of the action research course. The inquiry may be carried out independently, in collaboration with teaching peers at your school, or in collaboration with another instructional leader in your cohort.

The report and public presentation of the inquiry project will offer you the opportunity to share your exploration of a puzzling problem of practice from your professional work. It will also provide evidence of your mastery of core concepts presented in the Research Inquiry strand, as well as concepts, theories, and practices presented from the other three strands of the program.

The faculty and advisors will support you in the development of your project, review completed project reports and public presentations, evaluate them and provide feedback to you. Approval, following successful completion of the report and presentation and a program learning synthesis paper, will constitute the final requirement for graduation.

To view handouts from previous years' Capstone Projects, please click below.

MIL Capstone Presentations

2017 Cohort

Amanda Mattocks: Measuring Distributed Teacher Leadership Networks in a High School Using Social Network Theory

Cathy Hamblet: The Impact of Teacher Inquiry and Cognitively Guided Instruction On Fifth Grade Children’s Math Thinking

Erika Klein: Developing a Culturally Responsive Lens: Diversifying Read-Aloud Texts in an Elementary School Setting

Lindsay Wood: Coaching Collaboratively: A Layered Approach to Professional Development for Coaches

Megan Randow: Laying the Foundation: Attempting to Develop School Culture to Encourage Instructional Growth

Quinn Avery: Strengthening Our School’s Parent-Teacher Partnership

Samantha Arce: Exploring Parent and Teacher Perceptions of Family Engagement

Victoria Finney: Increasing Collegiality and Effectiveness Among Teachers During Staff Meetings


2016 Cohort

Natalee Daniels: Content Language Objectives: Pathway to Student Agency for English Language Learners 

Sarah Donohue: Collaboration in Action: Investigating the Role of School Culture, Group Interactions and Individual Mindsets

Maryclaire Ellis: Supporting Professional Development of Middle School Mathematics Teachers: The Effect of a Mathematics Coach on Fostering Teacher Growth

Janel Hershey: Investigating the Implementation of Professional Development Structures and the Influence They Have on the Deprivatization of Practice

Lane Lopus: Courageous Conversations About Race: Laying Narrative Groundwork in a Suburban High School

Kendall Paine: The Residency Model and Its Impact on Teacher Development: A Seattle-Based Study

Sarah Schiesz: Investigating Factors that Influence the Productivity and Collegiality of Professional Learning Communities

Andrea Slack: The Power of Professional Learning: Using PLCs to Enhance Accessibility of Instruction for English Learners

Kristen Tollefsen: In Support of New Teachers: Creating a Formal, District-Wide Induction Program


2015 Cohort

Sarah Condreay: Professional Development Cycles at Sumas Elementary

Heather McLyman: Using Principal’s Cabinet to Implement a District’s Vision of Professional Learning Communities

Kate McMullen: Entering the Woods of Teacher Leadership

Shayna Medved: Implementing a Teacher Mentorship Program in a Private Early Childhood School: An Action Research Project

Dulce Reyna-Gonzales: Supporting School-Wide Reading Goals: The Challenges of Peer Observations and Teacher Collaboration at a Public Elementary School

Kirsten Rooks: Coaching for Ambitious Science Teaching: Experiences of a Beginning Coach

Cara Wilson: How Does the Implementation of a School-Wide Positive Behavior Support System Effect Teacher Efficacy, Student Efficacy and Student Academic Achievement?


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