Competency-based learning or Competency-Based Education and Training is an approach to teaching and learning more often used in learning concrete skills than abstract learning. It differs from other non-related approaches in that the unit of learning is extremely fine grained. Rather than a course or a module every individual skill/learning outcome, known as a competency, is one single unit. Learners work on one competency at a time, which is likely a small component of a larger learning goal. The student is evaluated on the individual competency, and only once they have mastered it do they move on to others. After that, higher or more complex competencies are learned to a degree of mastery and isolated from other topics. Another common component of Competency-based learning is the ability to skip learning modules entirely if the learner can demonstrate they already have mastery. That can be done either through prior learning assessment or formative testing. (Wikipedia)
From the Federal Register
Notice Expanding an Experiment Under the Experimental Sites Initiative; Federal Student Financial Assistance Programs Under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as Amended
In a Federal Register notice published on July 31, 2014, the Secretary invited postsecondary educational institutions that participate in the student financial assistance programs authorized under title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), to apply to participate in institutionally-based experiments, including the Competency-Based Education experiment, under the Experimental Sites Initiative.
We are providing postsecondary students the opportunity to learn at their own pace only after they have been through a public school system that standardized and regulated every aspect of their primary and secondary education.
It is evident that our government knows how to properly educate our children. However, waiting until they reach the postsecondary level of education to provide a proper education only fans the flames of failure experienced by too many of America’s students.
We must provide every child in America with a free and public education that is developmentally appropriate, Arts based, experiential and concentrated on discovering, developing, and directing their individual gifts and talents.
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