Competency credits ‘unbundle’ college

When nearly three out of four students aren’t enrolled in full-time, four-year degree programs, it’s time to drop “seat time” credits in favor of credits for competency, writes Daniel Greenstein of the Gates Foundation. “Unbundling college will help adult students.

However, documenting students’ competency is challenging.

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  1. How would this concept be challenging? I’ve successfully got waivers for classes which I’ve had real world experience doing the material that would have been covered in the course, but the only difference is that I usually had more than 2 years of actual experience (and in one case, 10 plus years).

    If colleges are having a problem proving that a student knows enough of the material to be given credit or a waiver on coursework, I’d say the problem exists with the college and not the student (as a general rule).


  2. Patti W. says:

    I think the challengers are surmountable. When I did consulting I got all my certifications through testing and performance-based tasks that were evaluated by people in the field. Not a big deal, and it meant I could save my company a ton of money by studying on my own. My experience helped me pass those tests much more than any class could have.

    Now that I teach middle school, I feel that adopting systems where kids who already know the material can get credit for it and move ahead would be tremendously helpful.

    Most employers care what a potential employee can do rather than how many hours they’ve spent sitting in a seat listening to lecture.

    • Patti,

      Exactly 100% correct. Unfortunately, there will always be that segment in the world that equates seat time with knowledge (moronic concept).

      If a student has mastered the material, time to move them along (since students learn at different rates, and in different ways (hands on vs. book learning, etc)).