During the past 6 months eXtension has taken the first steps to integrate competency based education (CBE) into its core offerings. CBE tools scale up professional development by standardizing assessment with consensus-built statements of knowledge, skills and abilities, while enabling customized learning resources for varying contexts. Frameworks can be used for curating resources, designing programs and assessing not just change in knowledge but level of mastery.
Competency Framework Development
Two working groups, Working Out Loud, and the Climate Learning Network, piloted eXtension’s new competency framework development (CFD) process to create detailed frameworks that support training for national eXtension members. This virtual process uses the best practices from established curriculum development and skill identification methods enhanced by electronic tools and delivered online to produce a full competency framework in less than 14 hours.
With the support of Larry Lippke, we created a test environment for the eXtension learning management system (Moodle 3.1) with CBE capabilities and new tools (e.g. learner profiles, course and activity tagging, and learning plans). Moodle 3.1 will be launched publicly on the eXtension Moodle as soon as it becomes available this Fall. Next, we are identifying and developing great new tools to help tag, manage, and generate online resources. The first GODAN Fellow, to be announced soon, will be participating in this process.
We are currently developing a framework for National Urban Extension Leadership’s County Extension Directors, and several more are planned with eXtension groups over the next few months. With the lessons learned from our pilots with Working Out Loud and the Climate Learning Network, we hope to reduce the time required to 12 hours or less.
What’s ahead for CFD?
We are gearing up to train eXtension CFD facilitators to make this service more widely available. Over the course of the next few months we will build a competency framework for eXtension CFD facilitators and finalize the training materials. We expect to begin offering CFD facilitator training–competency based, of course–at the beginning of 2017.
Learn more about Moodle 3.1 and CFD
The upcoming eXtension quarterly webinar on Oct 19, 2016 will focus on competency based education and training. New and improved competency framework tools in Moodle will be demonstrated.
What else is happening with Moodle and CBE?
We are currently working to deploy CBE tools asap and to provide a best practices model demonstration for resource tagging and alignment. We are supporting the Climate Learning Network as they take the competency framework created for Climate Literate Extension Professionals via the CFD process and use eXtension tools to identify manage, and align resources.