Universidad Castilla-La Mancha (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN14 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Pages: 701-707
ISBN: 978-84-617-0557-3
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 7-9 July, 2014
Location: Barcelona, Spain
The adaptation process towards the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) has implied changes in teaching and learning. It entailed a convergence towards a new framework, in which the student is the center of the learning process. The new methodological approach in the EHEA umbrella is based into Competency-based learning or Competency Based Education.

To analyze how the implementation was developing, we selected two main individual skills as learning outcome. One was an instrumental skill “Decision Making” and other was a systemic skill "Initiative and Entrepreneurship". We analyzed results obtained from assessments carried out by using proposed rubrics. The selected subjects to implement rubrics were Forest Economics (mandatory in first course) and Forest Valuation (optional in third course).

The initial proposal was to evaluate both two skills by using rubrics, a type of matrix that provides scaled levels of achievement or understanding for a set of criteria or dimensions of quality for a given type of performance. The rubric to evaluate “Decision Making” was based on three indicators:
i) Attitude to face different activities and problems (weighted at 40%),
ii) initiative and confidence to develop activities (weighted at 30%),
iii) results of activities implemented (weighted at 30%).

The rubric to evaluate “Initiative and Entrepreneurship” was based on four indicators:
i) Take initiatives facing new situations (weighted at 30%),
ii) Self Esteem, students have an adequate self-concept which allow them to take initiatives (weighted at 15%),
iii) risks and opportunities analysis, students are to anticipate effects of their actions (weighted at 40%), and
iv) the initiative promotes the involvement to other students (weighted at 15%).

The rubrics were developed to be evaluated by using two different performances:
a) student essay responses in an oral presentation
b) delivery of a technical report.

We compared results obtained which showed that student improved their knowledge and marks. It was due to the fact that they were given a guide clarifying the expectations of the teacher (or trainer) about the proposed performance on a given assignment and how goals should be met. The improvement was higher for students in low level courses which demonstrated that novice students were prepared to pass a particular task or type of test, even the first time they were facing it.

In this way, the rubric assessment demonstrated to be a useful tool to implement the Competency-based learning, simplifying the teaching and evaluation way and improving results and the professional skill for students.
Rubric, Competency-based learning, Skills.