Higher Education Institutes and Businesses have been trying hard to fill the perpetual and ever increasing skilled workforce gap for decades now, and while competency-based education (CBE) has seen a slow adoption, it does prove to be effective in addressing this challenge.
With the rise of automation, employable skills, attitudes, and behaviors are changing. The future of work is changing. Large corporations are already dismissing the need for degrees and focusing on bootcamps to make their new and existing hires relevant for their businesses.
Lifelong learning is no longer a buzzword. It is the most essential ingredient for our relevancy and progress, not just at the workplace but in life!
So, how does CBE help learners adapt to the changing work tasks and ensure continuous mastery of skills at the workplace?
CBE helps learners focus on what they are expected to “do” (mastery of skills) rather than what they are expected to “know”. The system is flexible and personalized to allow learners to progress at their own pace, though there might be some intervention by mentors and facilitators.
That CBE is a product, is a misconception. It is instead an iterative process for designing, developing, and delivering a competency-based curriculum.
Hurix framework for designing competency-based learning
Subject Matter Experts and ID collaboration
We place more emphasis on the initial design phase, wherein the subject matter experts (SMEs) and instructional designers (IDs) work collaboratively to finalize the competencies and overall design or blueprint of the program, ensuring an enriching, engaging, and experiential (real-world) experience for the learners as they master skills.
This interaction is a recurring process in order to ensure technical accuracy and a strong conceptual and visual representation of the content.
Working towards program goals
The key players of the learning ecosystem are kept in mind – the specific industry (and the job profiles in demand along with the supply gap), the institutions and its goals, and most importantly the learner – their profile and expectations from the program.
Competency statements form the core framework, corresponding to units in the course/program. Each competency statement is further broken down into skills that organize content into modules or lessons within each unit.
Backward design principles are applied to ensure learners are able to demonstrate the competencies, rather than just know what and how they are expected to behave. Both IDs and SMEs play crucial roles in getting the design right; the development process is iterative and more agile than the traditional waterfall model.
Assessments that demonstrate competencies
Assessments are the crux of the learning journey. Even if a learner does not go through the content, as long as they are able to take and clear the assessments, they are deemed successful.
We incorporate interactive assessments into the learning programs that help educators to effectively gauge and assess learners’ competency levels. We enable the educators to monitor the learner progress throughout the delivery of the program so that dynamic changes can be made to make this an individual and personalized journey for the learners.
And although self-paced, the programs are designed with enough triggers (both by design and by human intervention – faculty and peers) to ensure successful completion by learners.
A blend of synchronous and asynchronous learning
A blend of synchronous and asynchronous learning is ideal for such programs, making it more affordable for the education providers as well. Our instructional design experts thoughtfully select when and how to use asynchronous and synchronous learning. This step is critical to ensure benefits of both modalities are included in the program design.
As a ground rule, asynchronous elements such as videos, quizzes, checklists are used for content interactions. And, synchronous elements such as case study activities and discussions are utilized more for social interactions.
Online learning is no longer a choice! A blend of synchronous and asynchronous learning has proven to be effective and affordable both for the consumers (learners) and the suppliers (educational institutions).
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