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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Competency-based education is all the rage: What is it?

"If you've paid any attention to higher education the past couple of years, odds are you've heard the term "competency-based education," or CBE." according to Kimberly K. Estep, Ph.D., chancellor of WGU Tennessee

Photo: Dr. Kimberly Estep gives a presentation on WGU Tennessee. 

Hailed by corporate executives, global foundation presidents and our nation's foremost education experts, competency-based education is already changing how we think about learning.

So, what is it?

Simply put, competency-based education measures learning rather than seat time.
The traditional higher-education model, the format most of us are familiar with, does the opposite — measuring the time students are in class, usually in credit hours or semester hours.

In a traditional school, you have to complete three credit hours for Accounting 101. In a competency-based university, you have to complete a series of assessments and learning benchmarks that prove your mastery of the material covered in Accounting 101.

As chancellor of WGU Tennessee — the nonprofit, online, competency-based university launched in 2013 as part of Gov. Bill Haslam's Drive to 55 effort — I've worked diligently the past two years to articulate just what CBE means and its potential benefits for working Tennesseans who need to get an advanced degree to further their careers.

Source: The Tennessean