Martin Mulder

Em. Professor of Education

The Carl Perkins Act on CTE (2006) includes competency-based applied learning for higher-order and problem-solving skills and more

by mmulder on October 26, 2017

Not new, but I just read that in the United States’ Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006 on page S. 250—4, Career and Technical Education is defined as including competency-based applied learning. For the worldwide discussion about the competence-based education philosophy, this is quite relevant. Competency-based applied learning in this Act does not refer to basis skills or laundry lists of functional knowledge, but to the acquisition of academic knowledge, higher-order reasoning and problem-solving skills, work attitudes and knowledge about the world of work, including entrepreneurship. That’s quite different from what critics of the competence-based education philosophy attribute to this concept.

The Act literally states:

‘The term ‘career and technical education’ means organized educational activities that—

(A) offer a sequence of courses that—

(i) provides individuals with coherent and rigorous content aligned with challenging academic standards and relevant technical knowledge and skills needed to prepare for further education and careers in current or emerging professions;

(ii) provides technical skill proficiency, an industry-recognized credential, a certificate, or an associate

degree; and

(iii) may include prerequisite courses (other than a remedial course) that meet the requirements of this

subparagraph; and

(B) include competency-based applied learning that contributes to the academic knowledge, higher-order reasoning and problem-solving skills, work attitudes, general employability skills, technical skills, and occupation-specific skills, and knowledge of all aspects of an industry, including entrepreneurship, of an individual.’

Source: 2006 Carl Perkins Act BILLS-109s250enr

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