What is CBE?

Competency-based education (CBE) is an innovative educational model that uses the application of learning, not time, as the sole means of determining progress to degree completion. Students can accelerate through their programs of study and into the workplace by demonstrating mastery of specific knowledge, and skills, abilities, or attitudes (i.e. competencies).

This approach has proven effective in addressing the needs of low-income, adult learners, especially those with prior work or life experience such as veterans, incumbent workers, and the under-employed. CBE also benefits employers by improving alignment with industry needs. The rigor of the CBE program design process requires consensus between educators and employers on academic, industry, and workforce competencies and definitions of mastery - ensuring that students gain the skills they need to succeed in the workplace.