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Implementation Science

Implementation Drivers

Stages of implementation are not linear. Rather, teams move between stages as the work evolves and as team members learn new ways of working together. Implementation drivers-defined by NIRN as the key components of the capacity and the functional infrastructure supports that enable a program's success-affect teams' ability to implement fully agreed-on practices.

NIRN identified three categories of implementation drivers: (1) competency, (2) organization, and (3) leadership. A brief description of each follows.

Competency Drivers. Competency drivers develop, improve, or sustain team members' and teams' capacity to implement a particular practice (strategy, action, intervention, etc.) as intended. Coaching, training, and the recruitment and selection of the right personnel for the right positions are examples of competency drivers.

Organization Drivers. Organization drivers-such as facilitative administration, data systems that support decision making, and systems interventions-are mechanisms that create and sustain hospitable organizational and system environments for effective implementation.

Leadership Drivers. Leadership drivers (e.g., technical and adaptive leadership) focus on providing the right leadership strategies for the types of leadership challenges that often emerge as part of the change process and involve making decisions, providing guidance, and supporting organizational functioning.

OIP team structures (DLTs, BLTs, TBTs) and the Ohio 5-Step Process are tools that districts can use to support the full implementation of effective instructional practices and increase the collective capacity of the district to improve adult professional practice and student learning. For more information about implementation science, readers are encouraged to visit the Active Implementation Hub.

This Foundational Concept can be found in the following module pages: