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Competency-Based Education: Measuring Quality

by Michael B. Horn

eCampus News

Article excerpt

How should quality assurance for competency-based ed work?

Whenever a disruptive innovation emerges—and online, competency-based learning deployed in the right business model is a disruptive innovation—it doesn’t look as good as existing services according to the old metrics of performance.

Our take

No one-size-fits-all approach to effective online learning assessments

This article argues that online, competency-based programs may require different forms of analysis to monitor outcomes and a paradigm shift in terms of the new metrics that will hold the most value. Educators and administrators will need to consider new definitions of success tied to desired quality outcomes. That can be a tough argument, though, as academic purists may be unwilling to abandon traditional means of assessment, and rightly so. Assessments not truly tied to real learning outcomes don’t benefit anyone. What’s the best path forward?

Conversations around assessing online learning outcomes have been taking place for some time and need to continue to take place with new players—including employers—involved in these discussions. As this author points out, different types of programs require different types of assessments. It is unlikely that a one-size-approach will effectively serve all.

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