Examines the state of competency-based models of postsecondary education in the U.S., focusing on their assessment capabilities and whether they can function outside of a credit-bearing system.

Describes examples of current competency-focused degree programs in the U.S., which include competency frameworks within traditional course-based systems and competency frameworks that drive curricular redesign (p. 4-5). These competency-based programs allow students to progress towards a degree in various ways (e.g. portfolio assessments, standardized exams, or completing coursework) (p. 5). Argues that this competency-focused model is more efficient, effective and fair to students and identifies suggestions for implementation as well as policy changes that would create a more welcoming environment to this approach (p. 6). “These policy changes can provide a starting point for what could ultimately be a transformed system of higher education that is focused on student learning above all” (p .7).

(Abstractor: Author and Website staff)

Full publication title: Competency-Based Degree Programs in the U.S.: Postsecondary Credentials for Measurable Student Learning and Performance