Building Capacity: Overview

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A brief on conceptualizing capacity building (Lammert, Johnson & Fiore, 2015) was prepared as part of the Center to Improve Project Performance (CIPP) operated by Westat for the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP).  This brief defines capacity building in education.

“Capacity building is an intervention that strengthens an organization’s ability to fulfill its mission by promoting sound management, strong governance, and persistent rededication to achieving results.”

This definition readily applies to building the capacity of AT services. “Building AT capacity” refers to a more sustainable way to deliver AT services to meet the needs of a changing population of students at a time when we have the capacity to personalize instruction for a wide range of learners using more readily accessible technology.  It is incumbent upon AT service providers to re-vision AT services to meet 21st century educational paradigms, to build AT practices that are grounded in sound management, providing documentation of effective services with clear yearly objectives that demonstrate AT team accountability.


Lammert, J. D., Johnson, L., & Fiore, T. A. (2015). Conceptualizing capacity building. Rockville, MD: Westat, Obtained on March 4, 2019 at