22 05, 2019

How to Equip Students with Workplace-Ready Soft Skills

2019-07-05T17:33:01-05:00 May 22nd, 2019|Competency Based Education, continuing education, course design, Curriculum Planning, Educational Content|0 Comments

The price of college continues to rise. That’s a fact. With that rising price tag, it’s critical that colleges give students the workplace-ready soft skills they need. Historically, college skills included academic and sometimes technical skills. Recently, employers have noticed new graduates are missing some key skills: workplace-ready soft skills. Essentially, they weren’t able to effectively work with others. Colleges began to realize they needed to make changes. Hard academic skills were no longer enough. The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) and a group of education and HR professionals came together. They developed a recipe for career readiness. These eight key ingredients provide students with the tools they need to find success in any workplace. NACE’s Eight Career Readiness Skills Critical Thinking and Problem Solving Employees use reasoning and logic to make decisions and analyze problems. They make connections between factors to find the best solution. Communication Skills Employees convey thoughts and ideas to people both inside and outside of the organization. They need to know how to communicate both through writing [...]

8 11, 2017

5 Strategies for Giving Learners a V.O.I.C.E. in Competency-Based Education

2019-05-09T17:57:37-05:00 November 8th, 2017|Competency Based Education|0 Comments

I recently asked a friend of mine, Elizabeth, a student enrolled in a competency-based program, why she chose that program instead of a traditional program. Without hesitation, she said, “The ability to learn on my own terms and to make the process work for me.” Elizabeth selected the program because its freedom and flexibility allowed her to juggle school and work. What she described is what we call student-centered learning. As described in this document jointly prepared by Jobs for the Future and the Council of Chief State School Officers, there are four characteristics of student-centered learning: 1. Learning activities allow learners to personalize the learning experience to meet their needs. 2. Learners demonstrate competency as a measure of learning. 3. Learners can choose when and where they learn. 4. Learning activities and course structure allow learners to take responsibility for their learning.   When developing a competency-based course, focus on your audience, preparation, introduction, presentation, engagement, evaluation, and continued support. This checklist outlines the key elements of developing a competency-based course.   During Competency Based [...]

17 10, 2017

Learning by Doing: 5 Strategies to Increase Learner Engagement in Competency-Based Education

2019-05-24T13:33:39-05:00 October 17th, 2017|Competency Based Education, Students|0 Comments

Most students who enroll in a competency-based education (CBE) program start out excited, motivated, and ready to learn. For too many students, that enthusiasm starts to wane a few weeks into the course. This is bad news for students and the enrolling institution. “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” Ralph Waldo Emerson Lack of engagement is a serious issue. Disengaged, discouraged students are more likely to drop out than their enthusiastic and engaged peers. Students may drop out of a CBE program for several reasons, including the actual learning experience. Students may become discouraged and quit if learning materials are too difficult to understand or poorly presented. Students may become disinterested and quit if learning activities are dull or uninspiring. Students may become frustrated and quit if they believe they’re wasting time on material they already know or view as irrelevant. While students may become disengaged for reasons that are beyond the control of the educational institution, course designers can strive to create engaging courses that discourage student drop out. An engaging CBE learning experience [...]