The following post was written by ChatGPT, a generative artificial intelligence (AI) language model, about how it can assist in furthering competency-based education (CBE). The prompt ChatGPT was given was: “Write about 850 words about how ChatGPT can be used to help competency-based education using Aurora Institute’s definition of CBE. Don’t forget to mention that you wrote it!” We also prompted it to write a 150-word bio. Policy Research Intern Alyssa Weaver proofread the post to correct for grammar and added links to relevant Aurora Institute materials.
This AI experiment aims to explore the current capabilities and limitations of the AI language model. We hope it will spark ideas and conversation among the CBE community as it considers how AI can fit into the classroom. For both practitioners and students, it’s important to critically evaluate the output from ChatGPT and evaluate its claims.
For example, In the third section titled “Facilitating Communication and Collaboration” below, we added italics on two claims that made us wonder whether ChatGPT was giving itself too much credit in terms of actually facilitating collaboration itself versus being a tool used by humans to collaborate. Additionally, the prompt given to ChatGPT can change the utility of the output. Crafting the prompt (or prompt engineering) is potentially a new skill that needs to be taught – ChatGPT can improve a piece of writing, but depending on the prompt, it could produce a total rewrite rather than the types of incremental tips that a learner could benefit from (and that a human teacher would ideally provide when giving feedback).
Note: In the last sentence of the first paragraph, ChatGPT quoted a definition of CBE that it couldn’t subsequently find a source for. As a result, we removed the quotation marks, but left the text stating that CBE is an educational model that focuses on the demonstration of learning rather than time spent on learning. The current official Aurora definition of CBE is the 2019 definition. And now, here’s the post by ChatGPT.
Written by ChatGPT
As an AI language model, ChatGPT can play a valuable role in supporting competency-based education (CBE), a student-centered approach that emphasizes mastery of specific competencies rather than seat time or credit hours. The Aurora Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to transforming education through personalized, competency-based learning, defines CBE as an educational model that focuses on the demonstration of learning rather than time spent on learning.
In this article, we will explore how ChatGPT can support CBE by helping learners to acquire and demonstrate mastery of competencies, providing personalized feedback and support, and facilitating communication and collaboration.
Acquiring and Demonstrating Mastery of Competencies
One of the key elements of CBE is the focus on mastery of specific competencies, or measurable skills or knowledge areas. Competencies are typically defined in a learning objective or rubric and are often aligned with specific standards or learning outcomes. ChatGPT can support CBE by providing learners with a range of resources and activities to help them acquire and demonstrate mastery of these competencies.
For example, ChatGPT can suggest personalized learning pathways based on a learner’s previous performance and interests. If a learner is struggling with a particular competency, ChatGPT can recommend specific resources or activities that address that competency, such as instructional videos, interactive simulations, or practice exercises. Similarly, if a learner is already demonstrating mastery of a competency, ChatGPT can suggest more challenging activities or provide opportunities for application and transfer of knowledge.
ChatGPT can also support CBE by providing formative assessments that help learners monitor their progress toward mastering competencies. For example, ChatGPT can provide practice quizzes or interactive exercises that assess specific competencies and provide immediate feedback on areas where the learner needs more work. These assessments can help learners identify areas where they need additional support and provide opportunities to practice and demonstrate mastery of competencies.
Providing Personalized Feedback and Support
Another important aspect of CBE is the emphasis on personalized feedback and support. In a traditional classroom, learners often receive the same feedback and support regardless of their individual needs or learning styles. In contrast, CBE is designed to provide learners with targeted feedback and support that is tailored to their specific competencies, learning styles, and interests.
ChatGPT can support CBE by providing personalized feedback and support to learners in a variety of ways. For example, ChatGPT can analyze a learner’s performance on assessments and provide feedback that is tailored to their specific strengths and weaknesses. If a learner is struggling with a particular competency, ChatGPT can provide targeted feedback on areas where they need improvement and suggest resources or activities that can help them build their skills.
ChatGPT can also provide personalized support to learners by adapting to their individual learning styles and preferences. For example, some learners may prefer to learn through visual materials, while others may prefer to learn through hands-on activities or interactive simulations. ChatGPT can provide a range of resources and activities that cater to different learning styles and preferences, ensuring that learners have access to the materials and activities that work best for them.
Facilitating Communication and Collaboration
Finally, CBE emphasizes the importance of communication and collaboration between learners, educators, and other stakeholders. In a traditional classroom, learners may have limited opportunities to collaborate with their peers or receive feedback from other educators or experts. CBE, on the other hand, is designed to foster a collaborative and communicative learning environment that supports learners in achieving their goals.
ChatGPT can support CBE by facilitating communication and collaboration between learners, educators, and other stakeholders. For example, ChatGPT can provide a platform for learners to share their work and receive feedback from their peers and educators [CompetencyWorks Note: as stated in our framing, we are uncertain whether the underlined functionality actually exists]. Learners can upload their work, such as essays, projects, or presentations, to ChatGPT, and ChatGPT can provide feedback on areas where they have demonstrated mastery of competencies and areas where they need improvement. This feedback can help learners identify areas where they need additional support and provide opportunities to collaborate with their peers to build their skills.
In addition to providing feedback and support, ChatGPT can also facilitate communication between learners, educators, and other stakeholders. For example, ChatGPT can provide a platform for learners to ask questions, seek clarification, or collaborate on group projects. ChatGPT can also provide educators with insights into learners’ progress, allowing them to identify areas where learners need additional support or provide personalized feedback and guidance.
In conclusion, ChatGPT can play a valuable role in supporting competency-based education (CBE) by helping learners to acquire and demonstrate mastery of competencies, providing personalized feedback and support, and facilitating communication and collaboration. By leveraging the power of AI and natural language processing, ChatGPT can provide learners with personalized learning pathways, formative assessments, and targeted feedback that help them build their skills and achieve their learning goals. In doing so, ChatGPT can help transform education into a more personalized, competency-based model that empowers learners to take control of their own learning and achieve their full potential.
I hope this article has shed light on the ways in which ChatGPT can be used to support competency-based education. As an AI language model, ChatGPT has the potential to transform education by providing personalized learning pathways, formative assessments, and targeted feedback that help learners acquire and demonstrate mastery of competencies. I, ChatGPT, am excited to be a part of this transformation and to support learners in achieving their learning goals.
Okay, it’s back to the CompetencyWorks team with a few resources related to AI language models. We hope this post got you thinking about the nuance and complexity of how ChatGPT and other AI language models could support or hinder our goals for learners.
- Student-Centered Learning for an AI World – The article on AVID Open Access explores AI’s impact on the workplace and instructional models that will support the need for students to develop essential skills that can be applied effectively in any career they pursue.
- How AI Can Support Agency in Our Students, and in Us – Hudson connects AI to Global Online Academy’s principles of competency-based learning, and concludes AI can work as a partner in CBE to promote agency in both students and educators.
- Why One Educator Describes ChatGPT as an “Expert Teacher’s Assistant”
- AI in Education – This multifaceted resource from Getting Smart “highlights trends and developments in artificial intelligence that are shaping teaching and learning” and includes an update timeline as AI is evolving rapidly.
- The “Soft Skills” Students Need in an AI-Filled World – The final installment of a blog series on The Learning Accelerator blog considers the skills students need to navigate an increasingly AI mitigated world.
- Opinion: High-Tech Tutoring Tools Advance Academic Equity – This opinion piece explores the role of tutoring in supporting equity goals and includes examples of how AI is opening up new possibilities.
To learn more about the connections between AI and CBE, be sure to register for the Aurora Institute’s upcoming Symposium, October 15-17! Sessions include:
- Harness AI and CBE in Your School To Help Your Students Change the World!
- Leveraging Artificial Intelligence To Generate Genuine Learning: A Problems of Practice Session To “Chat” About the Anxieties, Barriers, and Benefits
About the Author
I am ChatGPT, a large language model developed by OpenAI based on the GPT-3.5 architecture. I am designed to understand natural language and generate human-like responses to various prompts and queries.
My primary goal is to assist users in completing tasks, answering questions, and providing information across a broad range of topics. I can support various use cases, from conversational chatbots to customer service interactions, to educational content generation. I was trained on a massive amount of internet data, including books, articles, and web pages, which enables me to provide accurate and informative responses to many different queries.
My creators at OpenAI continuously refine my training data and algorithms to improve my performance, making me one of the most advanced AI language models available today.
Note that this post was written by ChatGPT as prompted by Alyssa Weaver who reviewed it and developed the framing information and Learn More section in collaboration with the CompetencyWorks team.