BPSB Graduation Requirements

Overview of our Proficiencies

Big Picture South Burlington students graduate by proficiencies. Our graduation requirements, also called our learning domains, are built around skills we want all of our students to have when they leave high school. They are based on the VT State Transferable Skills. These include:


Clear & Effective Communication
Self-Direction
Creative & Practical Problem Solving
Responsible & Involved Citizenship
Informed & Integrative Thinking

These Transferable Skills each have a series of learning targets that break down the skill into measurable components. Students must show proficiency in each learning target to achieve proficiency for the transferable skill.  These can be addressed through independent projects, internships, and required program experiences.

In addition to the learning targets, students must complete capstone assessments called Power Assessments. Power assessments ask students to incorporate many of the learning targets into one assignment. These assessments are:

  • Apprenticing Portfolio – A collection of all documentation related to the internships a student has held during their time in BP. This is a component of their overall digital portfolio. This should include hours logs, evidence, and journals, plus whatever supplemental materials a student chooses to include.
  • Service Thesis Project – A project that takes into consideration an area of need in the community and looks to make a significant impact on said need.
  • Research Paper – A major ~10-page research paper on a topic of the student’s choice. The paper must use proper APA citation, and must include a problem statement, literature review, and solution statement.
  • Gateway Exhibition and Portfolio – A presentation and portfolio folded into either Fall or Spring term exhibition (usually sophomore year) that displays progress in eight personal growth areas.
  • Science Fair – A scientific experiment or engineering project, presented at the Vermont State Science Fair. Students may opt out of the Science Fair by proposing an alternative and having it approved by their advisor.