Difference Between Competency and Standard Learning
One is standard-based or traditional learning and the other is competency-based or personalized learning.With the advancements in our understanding of human mental capabilities, different types of learning mechanisms have been developed. All of these learning streams have one major purpose — to teach students in the best way possible. However, it is not as simple as it might seem because these learning systems have advantages and downsides. That being said, we will discuss two such learning methods that are widely applied throughout the world.
We will look into the important aspects of these two ideas to better understand how they differ from each other. It’ll also help us in gauging their effectiveness in the real world related to learning and teaching.
The Learning Culture
All of us are aware of how the traditional learning culture is designed and how it works. There’s no single student that hasn’t sat in a class in front of a whiteboard, with their teacher trying to deliver as much as possible.
This structure is a monolith in the way that the teacher teaches everybody in the same manner and everyone absorbs the material according to their capacity. There is little to no personalization in this learning setting. On the other hand, competency-based learning changes the way learning is approached by students.
It develops a community of learners that are willing to share their experiences, trying to bring their unique perspectives into the picture. Online educational institutions also help in this regard as they open give opportunities to expand exploration for students.
In the traditional learning settings, a teacher tries to be as generic as possible, striving hard to make everyone understand what is being taught. And it is not the fault of that tutor. It is the flawed standardized system that is to be blamed. The students who might not be able to grasp the standardized way of teaching are left behind, creating a widening learning gap among students.
Competency-based Learning encourages the development of every student to broaden their horizons to move forward. Instructors can also collaborate with students to craft unique learning plans for everyone so that there’s no one left behind. That way, the learning gaps created by traditional learning are filled effectively.
The Assessment Philosophy
The standard learning system has put too much emphasis on assessments and that too at the wrong points of them. Giving students strict deadlines puts an extra burden on them, exhausting their mental faculties and causing burnout. This makes them lose their interest in the process, making it a mechanical exercise rather than a creative learning endeavor. Competency-based learning flips the whole concept of assessments on its head.
It does assessments in a completely different way so students are given flexible pathways to demonstrate their competency. The support mechanism in place guides students according to their capabilities and helps them develop essential skills along the way. Undoubtedly, competency-based learning is the future of flexible learning in higher education.