This report discusses the benefits of competency education in the context of digital technology that increases personalization and customization, enabling the management of individual learning progression in a data-driven environment. The report outlines 10 capabilities of a competency-based system including flexibility in time and resources, measuring learning gains, and setting college- and career-ready expectations; and 10 design choices that inform the necessary changes in areas such as school structure, grading, and student support.
This brief challenges the need for a fourth year of high school, addressing the controversy around “senior year” and its tendency to draw out the high school experience. In proposing the topic of early graduation, the document outlines a number of policy approaches and their successful implementation in various states. Among these programs are scholarship incentives, dual enrollment, virtual classes, and proficiency-based credits.
This workbook, a product specifically requested by the Oregon Department of Education, addresses the topic of proficiency in an attempt to define it objectively and ensure its consistency in the measurement of student achievement across schools and districts. It articulates the many manifestations of proficiency-based practices in the classroom and addresses the common concerns and questions of those exploring “proficiency.” The workbook makes a case for how schools and districts can and will ultimately benefit from this redesign.
This paper discusses the 16 Race to the Top grantees in 2012 -- a year in which the U.S. Department of Education highlighted the need for personalized learning environments. Specific attention is paid to the successful design and innovation plans of each grantee state, with a focus of four main activity areas within the context of personalized learning. This paper summarizes opportunities for innovation and potential challenges in constructing effective personalized learning environments, with the ultimate hope of providing key takeaway points for improvements in teaching and learning.
Schools today are struggling to achieve innovation, efficiency, and effective reform with limited financial resources. To allay these challenges met by education leaders, the U.S. Department of Education has suggested some approaches to increase educational productivity. Among these recommendations, the Department makes a strong case for policies targeted at personalized learning and competency-based pathways.
This brief argues that a competency-based approach to education is necessary to maximize learning opportunities and student diversity in the 21st century. Drawing from expertise in the field and the preexisting research base, this paper attempts to pinpoint the characteristics of high-quality and effective competency-based pathways. Additionally, it articulates the conditions wherein innovation and implementation of competency-based approaches have surged, and the associated setbacks and challenges states and districts are facing as a result.
During the tenure of the Obama administration, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) program has made an unprecedented investment—nearly $2 billion—in community colleges. Designed to transform community colleges in order to help put Americans back to work and improve the U.S.