The Rise of Competency-Based Education

Time and time again the issue of accessible and affordable education is taking center stage this election season. Business leaders, educators and politicians alike are interested in not only lowering the cost of education but also providing students with a program that gives them the skills necessary to be successful in today’s job market. For many, the solution is competency-based education.

Competency-based education is the idea of teaching students concrete skills versus abstract learning. This type of learning has become popular in the last five years as the economy continues to change new skills are required for the evolving job market.. Perhaps the most important aspect of competency-based learning is the way the students are evaluated. Instead of traditional assessment measures, students progress by displaying their skills and demonstrating that they have mastered a certain skill to the professor.

By allowing students to learn at their own pace, they have the opportunity to excel at a faster rate than if they were in a traditional program. Online digital badge programs are very similar to this style of learning as they are often self-taught at a pace that is comfortable for the student. Once students have the materials, they are required to learn the skills required for the badge. Once they have mastered the skills, they may take the test at any time within the set timeline.

For more information on digital badge programs and online education please visit http://www.umassonline.net/

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