How specific technology can enable a scalable, personalized Competency-Based Education (CBE); and why it’s must-have.

CBE-competency-technologyWe are entering new territory that is already transforming higher education in ways we have not seen since 1893 when the college credit hour was introduced.

That territory is being shaped by outcomes.

In our country today, there is a real imperative around the quality of teaching and learning and in producing outcomes that allow our nation’s students to compete in the global economy. This imperative is leading policymakers, educators and business leaders to support educational programs where institutions certify mastery and outcomes, as well as provide verification of what students have learned.

One of the most effective ways that institutions can scale efforts and demonstrate outcomes like never before is through the marriage of competency based education (CBE) and technology.

Scaling programs to large numbers of students, maintaining the integrity of the programs, and producing outcomes is now possible with learning management systems (LMS’) that are adaptable in design and built for just this purpose. With the right technology platform, the speed with which CBE programs can be developed and brought to the marketplace is astounding.

Take, for example, Algebra Nation, a personalized CBE program created by the University of Florida’s College of Education to help middle and high school students pass end-of-course algebra exams in the State of Florida that about 40 percent of students fail. By offering personalized, individualized learning through a competency-based system, students engaged in the program have consistently higher results than those who aren’t in the program.

There are 2,300 algebra teachers, representing every school district in Florida, who have embraced Algebra Nation. In addition, these teachers are engaging in their own online teaching community, sharing best practices and upping their teaching methods.

This is the future and the now of teaching and learning; and it applies to higher education, as well.

(Next page: The components of a great tech-enabled CBE program for scale)


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