In early October, NGLC’s Holly Morris traced some recent news and events around competency-based learning in our monthly blog series, Trending Now: Postseconday, including describing a meeting hosted by the Lumina and Gates foundations to discuss the “experimental sites” authority in the Higher Education Act. Issues around running a competency-based degree program were of critical interest to the NGLC Wave IIIb Breakthrough Models for College Completion grantees who convened in Anaheim a few weeks ago. (Brush up on the grantees’ models with the post, NGLC Releases Updated Profiles of Postsecondary Grantees.) Nancy Millichap and I shared what participants learned from the guest experts who presented and facilitated group discussions at the convening in three posts:
- Learn what Steve Klingler had to say about assessment at Western Governors University in For WGU and Other Breakthrough Models: Competency Means Rethinking Assessment.
- Examine Diego Navarro’s evidence-based approach to comprehensive, embedded student support of the Academy for College Excellence in Lighting the Fire: Student Support for Student Success
- And get some human-centered design thinking advice from Misa Misono of IDEO around recruitment and outreach of new students for breakthrough degree programs in To Market a New Degree Program, Start with the Learner.
The convening of breakthrough degree program grantees coincided with EDUCAUSE 2013, the annual conference with a decidedly “creativity” bent (at least for me) that I described in Creativity and Technology at the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference. In that post, I link to two panel sessions featuring several of the breakthrough model grantees. You can watch video archives of Teaching and Learning Breakthroughs: Next Generation Academic Models in Practice and Rethinking Business as Usual in NGLC Breakthrough Models. The creativity theme of the conference was further captured in And the Winners of the Breakthrough Models Academy Competition Were…All Twelve Teams, a post by Nancy Millichap that captures the breadth of the creativity of the Academy participants’ project team designs—their vision for innovation using technology to improve student success.
Competency-based learning and creativity are key components of NGLC’s open call for proposals for breakthrough school models, including the NGLC Regional Fund in Chicago and D.C. NGLC’s Sarah Luchs sets you up for a World Series Championship application for funding in Batter Up Launch Grants; On Deck Planning Grants. Applicants may be interested in the resources around digital content, financial sustainability and scalability, and operationalizing an academic model—all of which came out of a school site visit and two webinars, which Dalia Hochman described in NGLC’s Fall Semester of Learning Part I.