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Competency-Based Education

  /  Competency-Based Education

Defining "Competencies" at Akilah

Every course we teach is aligned with a specific set of core or program competencies. The core competencies span everything from digital literacy, to leadership and social responsibility, to career navigation, to self-esteem, with specific indicators to measure change.

Why We're Unique

Traditional academic models determine student success based on how much time a student spends on a specific subject. For example, a student spends one semester learning about a subject, and they receive one credit for that semester. This approach to learning doesn’t guarantee that the student has mastered the subject matter, nor does it guarantee that the student is prepared to apply the knowledge in a professional environment.

Rather than time, Akilah uses a variety of learning methods to ensure students master the subject matter before progressing. A student's success is determined by their ability to demonstrate a deep understanding of key concepts and skills. The government of Rwanda has adopted competency-based education as a national strategy to raise academic proficiency standards.

Preparing for the Workplace

Our curriculum effectively prepares students for the workforce because we collaborate with regional employers and industry experts to identify exactly what students need to know. Our courses are continuously updated to reflect the latest industry and workforce trends. As soon as students demonstrate they have mastered a particular concept or skill, they can advance to the next level. This way, students receive a tailored approach to learning and career preparation. 

CBE Frequently Asked Questions

What is CBE?

CBE, or competency-based education, is an outcomes-based, student-centered approach to learning that leads to earning a degree, diploma, or other credential by proving mastery of specific competencies instead of just completing credit hours. CBE is particularly effective for preparing graduates for the workforce because it focuses on what students know and can do.

How has Akilah developed its CBE curriculum?

Four international experts in CBE have developed an entirely new curriculum for all three of Akilah's diploma programs as well as its leadership, math, and English programs. Akilah developed its CBE competencies in collaboration with regional employers and tests for mastery of these skill sets. This ensures that students graduate with marketable expertise and employers have a consistent pipeline of talent with their required skills.

How is CBE different from vocational or technical training?

CBE is an educational approach commonly used in vocational or technical training. However, many colleges and universities, including Akilah, also use CBE to prepare their students for professional careers. Unlike most vocational or technical institutions, Akilah provides extensive supplementary training in "soft skills," such as leadership development, career preparation, and English writing and speaking. Students are expected to master more than industry skills so they can progress rapidly in the workplace and assume management roles.

If I've never studied in a CBE environment, can I still apply to study at Akilah?

You do not need to have any experience with CBE in order to study and succeed at Akilah. The institute will ensure that students are prepared for the rigors of CBE with an initial two-month Bridge Program. The Bridge Program will focus on CBE as well as digital literacy, math, and English.

Is Akilah's CBE curriculum accredited?

Yes, Akilah offers two-year, accredited diploma programs in Business Management & Entrepreneurship, Hospitality Management, and Information Systems.