What is Competency-Based Education?
Competency-based education (CBE) is quickly becoming accepted as an effective way to facilitate powerful, authentic learning at all levels. Sometimes referred to as personalized learning, mastery learning, or proficiency learning, students must demonstrate what they know and are able to do, rather than just put in “seat time” and complete a prescribed set of courses. However, designing a solid CBE program is not as simple as it sounds–it requires a great deal of thought, understanding, and know-how.
This model supports students’ learning in a rich way. Graduates are able to reach their goals and achieve their dreams because they were in an environment that enabled them to demonstrate what they know at their own pace. CBE, when structured properly, helps educators to personalize learning experiences.
The CBE model will be a major player in the educational arena over the next two decades at the P-12 level as well as at the collegiate level.
Essential Tenets for Educator Preparation Programs to Consider
There are some essential thoughts to consider for educator preparation programs thinking about adopting the competency-based education (CBE) model, and I shared some of those tenets in a commentary published in the Journal of Competency-Based Education entitled, Implications for Educator Preparation Programs Considering Competency-Based Education.
The model helps students demonstrate what they know and are able to do. This is done within the context of a set of well-articulated competencies. Teachers measure student learning through high-quality assessments. It’s a great example of academic excellence.
About the Author: Dr. Roberta Ross-Fisher has expertise in educator preparation, accreditation, online teaching & learning, and competency-based education. A former public school teacher and college administrator, Roberta is now a freelance writer, adjunct professor, and educational consultant.
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