What is CBE?
• Competency Based Education is a functional
approach to education that emphasizes life skills
and evaluates mastery of those skills according
to actual leaner performance.
• It was defined by the U.S. Office of Education as
a “performance-based process leading to
demonstrated mastery of basic and life skills
necessary for the individual to function
proficiently in society”
(U.S. Office of Education, 1978). .. Savage
What are competencies?
• Consist of a description of the
essential skills, knowledge, attitudes,
and behaviors required for effective
performance of a real-world task or
4. Competency Based Education
1. Specific, measurable competency statements
2. Content based on learner goals
3. Learner continues in program until
4. Use a variety of instructional techniques and
5. Focus on what the learner needs to learn, which
is the application of basic skills in a life skills
Competency Based Education
6. Use texts, media, and real life materials.
7. Provide learners with immediate feedback on
8. Pace instruction to learner needs
9. Have learner demonstrate mastery of specified
The problem of competence as a
1. The problem of competence standards
• When competences are chosen as the ultimate
objectives of education (as in, e.g. competence-
based education), they should be described in
terms of well-expressed behaviours in well-
The problem of assessment
Assessment of competences must include the issue
of transfer; but such assessment would require a
number of environments, each of sufficient
complexity. This would not only be laborious to set
up, and costly, but it would also require detailed
insight into the structure and functioning of the
The problem of values
Competence has been associated with successful
performance, effective use of resources, and
making the right choices.
Problem of stability
• Human performance is subject of decay.
Performance in new situations may even become
• The assessment of competences requires the
perspective of time and, in this regard, we need
to note again the lack of valid assessment
standards appropriate to complex situations.
The problem of conscious thought
• Descartian problem of mind-body
dualism and the associated question
of whether human behaviour is
'reflective', i.e. the result of a free will
and understanding, or 'reflexive', i.e.
a collection of automated responses.
The problem of complexity
Complexity cannot be an absolute
criterion for the distinction
between skills and competences.
Difference between skills and
• Skill is a part of competency. Competency
consists of three parameters- Knowledge (K),
Attitude (A) and Skills(S).
For example- I might be having very good
interpersonal skills or people skills, but I will not
be competent to join a company as HR
Professional unless I possess adequate education/
experience (Knowledge) and the right
temperament/ behaviour (attitude).
▫ e.g. Writing is a skill.... being ambidextrous is a
The problem af sub-competences
• Another problem arises from the idea of
• Competences may be decomposed into
▫ For instance, flying an airplane competently
includes the sub-competences of taking-off,
landing, dealing with emergencies, and so on.
Competecy profile features
• COMPETENCE 1: COMMUNICATION .
• COMPETENCE 2: MATHEMATICAL AND LOGICAL
• COMPETENCE 3: KNOWLEDGE AND INTERACTION
WITH THE PHYSICAL WORLD.
• COMPETENCE 4: HANDLING INFORMATION AND
• COMPETENCE 5: SOCIAL AND CIVIC
• COMPETENCE 6: CULTURAL AND ARTISTIC.
• COMPETENCE 7: LEARNING TO LEARN
• COMPETENCY 8: FOR AUTONOMY AND PERSONAL
Answer the following questions in group of
• What is a competence?
• What is the difference between competences
• Is the education system in Panama
implementing Competency Based Education?
If yes, how?
• What are the benefits of Competency Based
Education for learners of English as a second
• What are some problems of competence as a