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Introduction: What is CBVET?

Competency-Based Vocational Education and Training

Competency-based training is performance and standards-based and related to realistic workplace practices. Its focus is on what learners can do rather than on the courses they have completed (see also Deißinger/Hellwig 2011, 6).

This may be to knit a sweater, mend a piece of machinery, write an offer or deal with a difficult customer.

Learners are assessed on the basis of observed evidence.

Central features of competency-based training:

Outcome
The course is recognised to meet national competence standards that have been endorsed by a national authority. In the absence of national standards, course outcomes should be based on the authority’s definition of competence and endorsed by industry training boards or by relevant industry parties where industry training board coverage is not appropriate.
Curriculum
The curriculum gives learners a clear indication of what is expected of them in terms of performance, conditions and standards. Also, if appropriate, workplace and off-the-job training and assessment responsibilities should be identified.
Delivery
Delivery is flexible and learners can exercise initiative in the learning process. Learning materials used by providers indicate the degree to which programme delivery is learner-centred.
Assessment
Assessment should: Measure performance demonstrated against a specified competence standard; Be available for competences gained outside the course; Include workplace or off-the-job components if appropriate.
Reporting/recording
Reports of competences gained should be provided to learners. Reporting may be in terms of completed modules provided that the relationship between competences and modules is understood.
Certification
Persons demonstrating all prescribed competences in an accredited course or training programme should obtain a credential or statement of attainment which is recognised within the national framework.

(Adapted from: Victorian State Training Board, 1992, cit. from Deißinger/Hellwig 2011, 7)

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