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  1. 1. What is a level of competence? Simon Grant University of Bolton COME-HR conference Brussels, 2011-11-09
  2. 2. outline <ul><li>ideas of levels
  3. 3. quantitative v qualitative abilities
  4. 4. rankable v binary criteria
  5. 5. what is a level of competence?
  6. 6. specific v generic levels
  7. 7. defining and assigning levels
  8. 8. from eCOTOOL to InLOC </li></ul>
  9. 9. competence can be defined hierarchically in a kind of tree structure
  10. 10. e.g. coaching and mentoring draft
  11. 11. but … … … … what … … … … to do ... … … … about … … … … levels … … … … … your ideas?
  12. 12. <ul><li>to what can you apply your idea of levels? </li><ul><li>e.g. …
  13. 13. make a pizza?
  14. 14. coach and mentor staff?
  15. 15. negotiate an economic treaty? </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>we hope, a better idea of what levels are ... </li></ul>
  17. 17. … so you are better able to do it yourself
  18. 18. qua nt itative abilities <ul><li>lifting weights
  19. 19. threading needles
  20. 20. examples from all kinds of sports and games (you can easily imagine)
  21. 21. quantities, e.g. </li><ul><li>how much
  22. 22. how big
  23. 23. how small
  24. 24. how quickly
  25. 25. how efficiently </li></ul></ul>
  26. 26. qua l itative abilities <ul><li>drive a car without breaking any rules
  27. 27. do long division (on paper) correctly
  28. 28. use a chainsaw to cut down a tree safely
  29. 29. etc. etc. etc.
  30. 30. may be something that </li><ul><li>is more clear-cut
  31. 31. is to do with correctness or incorrectness
  32. 32. focuses on avoiding problems, mistakes, infringements
  33. 33. is about doing things properly </li></ul></ul>
  34. 34. qua nt itative abilities are rankable <ul><li>where you can ask “ how well can you …” e.g. </li><ul><li>program
  35. 35. play music
  36. 36. type
  37. 37. speak Dutch </li></ul><li>or “ how good are you at …” e.g. </li><ul><li>circus skills
  38. 38. word processing
  39. 39. knitting
  40. 40. medical procedures </li></ul><li>people could be ranked in ability </li></ul>
  41. 41. qua l itative binary criteria <ul><li>not “ how well can you ”, but simply “ can you …”
  42. 42. or “ are you able to …” e.g. </li><ul><li>juggle 3 balls for a minute
  43. 43. coherently apply styles to a word processed document
  44. 44. knit a woollen scarf
  45. 45. safely take blood samples from patients </li></ul><li>as well as </li><ul><li>drive a car without breaking any rules
  46. 46. do long division (on paper) correctly
  47. 47. use a chainsaw to cut down a tree safely </li></ul><li>“yes” or “not yet”, hence binary, not rankable </li></ul>
  48. 48. what is a level of competence, then? our suggestion …
  49. 49. in areas where competence can be greater or lesser (rankable) a level in that area of competence defines a reference point (binary) that someone may (or may not yet) have attained
  50. 50. try creating a haiku-like definition … my initial offering … competence levels – experience of seasons which you may now know
  51. 51. specific and generic levels <ul><li>specific level definitions </li><ul><li>binary ability criteria for specific areas of work or study </li></ul><li>generic level definitions </li><ul><li>descriptors that result in binary criteria when combined with a suitable field of work or study </li></ul><li>for all levels </li><ul><li>higher levels encompass or subsume lower </li></ul></ul>
  52. 52. 1 basic general knowledge basic skills required to carry out simple tasks work or study under direct supervision in a structured context 2 basic factual knowledge of a field of work or study basic cognitive and practical skills required to use relevant information in order to carry out tasks and to solve routine problems using simple rules and tools work or study under supervision with some autonomy 3 knowledge of facts, principles, processes and general concepts, in a field of work or study a range of cognitive and practical skills required to accomplish tasks and solve problems by selecting and applying basic methods, tools, materials and information take responsibility for completion of tasks in work or study; adapt own behaviour to circumstances in solving problems 4 factual and theoretical knowledge in broad contexts within a field of work or study a range of cognitive and practical skills required to generate solutions to specific problems in a field of work or study exercise self-management within the guidelines of work or study contexts that are usually predictable, but are subject to change; supervise the routine work of others, taking some responsibility for the evaluation and improvement of work or study activities 5 comprehensive, specialised, factual and theoretical knowledge within a field of work or study and an awareness of the boundaries of that knowledge a comprehensive range of cognitive and practical skills required to develop creative solutions to abstract problems exercise management and supervision in contexts of work or study activities where there is unpredictable change; review and develop performance of self and others 6 advanced knowledge of a field of work or study, involving a critical understanding of theories and principles advanced skills, demonstrating mastery and innovation, required to solve complex and unpredictable problems in a specialised field of work or study manage complex technical or professional activities or projects, taking responsibility for decision-making in unpredictable work or study contexts; take responsibility for managing professional development of individuals and groups 7 highly specialised knowledge, some of which is at the forefront of knowledge in a field of work or study, as the basis for original thinking and/or research; critical awareness of knowledge issues in a field and at the interface between different fields specialised problem-solving skills required in research and/or innovation in order to develop new knowledge and procedures and to integrate knowledge from different fields manage and transform work or study contexts that are complex, unpredictable and require new strategic approaches; take responsibility for contributing to professional knowledge and practice and/or for reviewing the strategic performance of teams 8 knowledge at the most advanced frontier of a field of work or study and at the interface between fields the most advanced and specialised skills and techniques, including synthesis and evaluation, required to solve critical problems in research and/or innovation and to extend and redefine existing knowledge or professional practice demonstrate substantial authority, innovation, autonomy, scholarly and professional integrity and sustained commitment to the development of new ideas or processes at the forefront of work or study contexts including research
  53. 53. defining and assigning levels <ul><li>first, someone has to define levels </li><ul><li>by defining these binary reference points
  54. 54. the eCOTOOL model says levels must have numbers </li></ul><li>then, anyone can use the levels </li><ul><li>to assess someone's ability in a particular area </li><ul><li>(may want to use level numbers between those defined)
  55. 55. must be a specific level </li></ul><li>to state a requirement of someone's ability </li><ul><li>again, must be a specific level </li></ul><li>to assign a generic level to a specific ability definition
  56. 56. as: generic level + ability area -> binary criterion </li></ul></ul>
  57. 57. future development <ul><li>eCOTOOL competence model being finalised
  58. 58. ideas will be taken forward by InLOC </li><ul><li>“European Learner Mobility 2: Integrating Learning Outcomes and Competences”
  59. 59. starting now, finishing early 2013 </li></ul><li>if you may be interested in InLOC </li><ul><li>ask us more about it
  60. 60. come to the consultation meeting, Berlin, 30 th </li><ul><li>(limited space means by invitation only, please!) </li></ul><li>tell us about what InLOC outcomes are needed to satisfy your requirements </li></ul></ul>
  61. 61. thanks for your attention! any questions?