Our Presenters

Keynote Speakers
Dr. Mary Hendrix

Keynote Speaker

Dr. Mary Hendrix is passionate about students and about the life-changing impact of education. A first-generation college student herself, she has devoted the past 40 years making a difference in the lives of students. Dr. Hendrix recently retired from Texas A&M University-Commerce after serving in a variety of key leadership positions and was named the University’s first Vice-President for Student Access and Success in January 2009.

A former public school teacher, counselor, and administrator, Dr. Hendrix has also served as an educational consultant to state departments of education, regional educational consortia, community colleges, and public schools. She has authored a state‑adopted textbook for seventh and eighth graders for career investigation and educational planning, numerous instructional manuals, and has secured grants in excess of $22 million to support her passion for raising academic expectations for students to meet real-world requirements, improving instructional strategies, using technology as a medium to foster student access to educational opportunities, and improving college readiness and student success. Most recently, she has served as the project director for the university’s Texas Affordable Baccalaureate project, which is the state’s first SACSCOC-approved competency-based degree program.

She holds the Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and has a master’s degree in Counseling with an emphasis in Student Personnel and Guidance. She has served in many leadership positions at community, state, and national levels, including serving on a local board of trustees for 19 years.

Deb Bushway

Deb Bushway is a consultant with the Lumina Foundation regarding Competency Based Education. She has been deeply involved in the Competency Based Education movement, including the launch of Capella University’s CBE direct assessment program and service as Senior Advisor to the Undersecretary at the US Department of Education regarding educational innovation. She is interested in higher education innovation focused on student learning and success.

She has previously served in a variety of roles including Provost, Vice President of Academic Innovation, Associate Dean and Professor at Capella University, University of Wisconsin – Extension, and Metropolitan State University in St. Paul, MN.

Chairs
Dr. Amardeep Kahlon

Dr. Amardeep Kahlon is passionate about innovation and research in higher education. With 27 years of experience at both the local and international level, she is keenly interested in innovative pedagogies for increasing student retention and engagement. She is currently the director of Fast Track to Success, a competency-based education project funded by The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. She is also a member of the Executive Council of the Texas Competency-Based Education Workgroup. She is the co-director of a recently awarded Texas Affordable Baccalaureate grant, where she will work with South Texas College to create accelerated pathways to a bachelors degree in computer science and applied technology for non-traditional populations such as returning veterans, displaced worker. Outside the US, she has served as the founding Dean of academic affairs at a university in India.

Besides her work at Austin Community College, Dr. Kahlon has been involved in multi-institutional publishing and research with colleges and universities from around the country and the world. She has presented at local, state, national, and international conferences. She is also committed to broadening the participation in computing and other under-represented areas. She is a skilled collaborator who is committed to building inclusive and supportive communities at all levels of education through research, teaching, and service.

Dr. Kahlon has an undergraduate in Honors English Literature with a minor in Economics and History. She also holds an undergraduate degree in Mass Communication and a graduate diploma in International Trade. Dr. Kahlon earned her Masters in Science with a specialization in Computer Science and Advanced Technology from Binghamton University and a doctorate in Educational Administration with a specialization in Higher Education Administration from The University of Texas at Austin.

Dr. Shonda Gibson

Dr. Shonda Gibson has served in a variety of roles in higher education, all concentrated on innovation and strategic progressive actions toward continuous improvement. She brings over 25 years of corporate and industry experience in the fields of leadership, operations management, recruiting, training, and team development.

In addition to serving as the Associate Provost for Institutional Effectiveness at Texas A&M University-Commerce, Dr. Gibson also serves as a SACSCOC Accreditation Liaison and evaluator. She served on the Texas Affordable Baccalaureate (TAB) Program Advisory Committee in creation and implementation of the state’s first competency-based degree offered by an accredited public institution, which earned the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board’s prestigious Texas Star Award. She has also led the Institute for Competency-Based Education (ICBE), a collaboratory funded by the Texas legislature for innovation focused on experimentation and research to advance the understanding of competency-based education and to support development and growth of CBE programs.

She earned a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology with an emphasis in Social Psychology, has a master’s degree in Psychology, and an MBA with an emphasis in both Management and Economics. Dr. Gibson is an active member of a wide variety of organizations and efforts designed to fully prepare students to thrive in our highly interconnected and diverse world.

Presenters Bios and Abstracts

(in alphabetical order)

Gemmy Allen

North Lake College

HRPO 2301 Human Resources Management: Course Demo

HRPO 2301 Human Resources Management: Course Demo

Gemmy Allen North Lake College gemmyallen@dcccd.edu

Abstract

North Lake College, Cedar Valley College, and the LeCroy Center of the Dallas County Community College District developed the Fast-track, competency-based education (CBE) Supervisor Certificate with open education resources (OER). HRPO 2301, the Human Resources Management Course, will be demonstrated.

HRPO 2301 is one of six courses in the Fast-track, CBE Supervisor Certificate providing training to upwardly mobile incumbent workers. The position of “supervisor” exists in all industries. In addition to the common skills and abilities required for successful supervisors, the demand-driven “power” skills, such as critical thinking, problem-solving, communication, customer service, and technology are addressed in the curriculum. The training allows the incumbent to skill up for advancement into higher paying, higher level jobs.

Students can complete the program in 24 weeks taking two courses every 8 weeks. The courses use open educational resources curated by two faculty subject matter experts. Thus, no textbooks are required, saving students hundreds of dollars. Technical staff at the LeCroy Center created videos, learning objects, graphics, and assessments. The content is accessible to students on any device including phones, tablets, and computers.

Presenter Bio

Gemmy S. Allen has a business background in management and marketing. Her education includes a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) from the University of Texas at Arlington, UTA, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of North Texas, UNT, and a Doctor of Education in Leadership (EdD) from Lamar University. Her awards include being named Outstanding Mountain View College Faculty Member and receiving the Golden Oak Award, Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce; the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development Excellence in Teaching Award at Mountain View College, as well as North Lake College; the award for Mountain View College Innovator of the Year; and member of Innovation of the Year at North Lake College, Cedar Valley College, LeCroy Center, and District Office.

She has served as a member of Microsoft Mentors, the Microsoft/Compaq College Advisory Council and is founding teacher, Virtual College of Texas — “Internet Teachers at Every College.”

She is the co-author of the textbook Management: Meeting and Exceeding Customer Expectations, now in its eleventh edition. In addition, she has co-authored several discipline-specific, Internet-related books, and has developed several online classes.

Michael Atkinson

Learning Objects, Inc. – UT Austin

Texas OnCourse: Streamlining Student Pathways to Postsecondary and Career Success and Panal Moderator for Designing for Evidence: Challenges and Benefits of Evidencing Competencies

Texas OnCourse: Streamlining Student Pathways to Postsecondary and Career Success

Michael Atkinson Learning Objects, Inc. UT Austin matkinson@learningobjects.com

Abstract

Texas OnCourse is a statewide initiative to streamline student pathways to postsecondary and career success by providing online training and resources for educators, students, and families. Phase 1 provides a CBE, micro-credential learning environment for high school advisors and counselors, students, and parents across the state.

Presenter Bio

Michael Atkinson is Senior Learning Engineer at Learning Objects, Inc. in Washington D.C. He received his Master’s in Educational Technology at Boise State University and is a Ph.D. candidate in Instructional Psychology and Technology at Brigham Young University. 

Kelvin Bentley

Tarrant County College District, TX

A Collaborative Lift: Lessons Learned in Creating an Institution’s Initial CBE Program

A Collaborative Lift: Lessons Learned in Creating an Institution’s Initial CBE Program

Kelvin Bentley Tarrant County College District, TX KELVIN.BENTLEY@tccd.edu

Abstract

Competency-based education is a popular discussion topic within higher education. Current credit-based courses require students to register for and complete a course within a specific time frame such as a semester or quarter. CBE assumes students can move forward in their degree program when they demonstrate mastery of specific competencies. This presentation will provide an overview of how a community college campus designed and developed its first CBE certificate in Teller Operations. In addition, conference attendees will learn good practices and lessons learned gained by the presenter at his institution. This information will help institutions new to CBE initiatives gain information that will guide their efforts to design and develop their initial CBE programs.

Presenter Bio

Kelvin Bentley, Ph.D. has over 15 years of experience in the field of online education as a faculty member, administrator, and consultant. Kelvin currently serves as the Vice President of Academic Affairs for Tarrant County College’s TCC Connect Campus which offers fully online certificates and programs and a Weekend College. Kelvin’s most recent honors include serving as the Vice Chair of WCET’s Steering Committee, an advisory board committee member of Educause’s Leading Academic Transformation initiative, an active participant in EDUCAUSE’s Breakthrough Models Academy in 2014 and as a Fulbright Specialist in distance education in September 2010 at the University of Antioquia in Medellin, Colombia.

Pamela S. Campbell, Ed.D.

San Jacinto College

Giving Credit Where Credit is Due: A Process for Awarding Credit for Prior Learning

Giving Credit Where Credit is Due: A Process for Awarding Credit for Prior Learning

Pamela S. Campbell, Ed.D. San Jacinto College Pamela.campbell@sjcd.edu

Abstract

Beginning in 2014, San Jacinto College convened a task force of faculty, staff, and administrators with the goal of creating multiple opportunities for students to earn Credit for Prior Learning (CPL). The primary work of the task force targeted several different populations: returning veterans, high school students, incumbent workers, and others with demonstrated skills in certain academic and technical areas.

The CPL Taskforce looked at these key options where CPL could be awarded:

  • External Challenge Exams
  • Internal or Departmental Challenge Exams
  • High School Articulation
  • Continuing and Professional Development (CPD) coursework
  • Licensure or Professional Certification
  • American Council on Education (ACE)

After examining each of these, the task force identified significant course credits that could be awarded based on the categories listed. A Credit for Prior Learning Manual was created in 2015 to guide students, advisors, and administrators in the proper policies and procedures for awarding of applicable credit. This presentation will focus on the processes used to develop the Manual and the progress of the initiative in awarding credit, developing more course credit options, and helping students move forward in their credential-seeking to complete their career pathways.

Presenter Bio

Dr. Pamela S. Campbell is the Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Success Partnerships for San Jacinto College. She holds an undergraduate degree from Texas Tech University, a Master’s Degree in Mathematics from the University of Houston-Clear Lake, and a Doctor of Education Degree in Higher Education Administration from Texas Tech University.

Dr. Campbell has been a teacher, professor, program director and administrator for 43 years. While serving at a math faculty member at the college, she taught the full spectrum of courses – Introductory Algebra to Calculus III. In her current role, she oversees the dual credit and early college high school programs across the college district. She has a strong background in and brings valuable experience to discussions about transitions and partnerships in the P16 arena. She is an active partner with the school districts in the College’s service area and creates partnerships to facilitate student success at the post-secondary level.

Martha Cheney, EdD

Walden University

Competency-Based Curriculum Development and Continuous Improvement

Competency-Based Curriculum Development and Continuous Improvement Martha Cheney, EdD Walden University martha.cheney@mail.waldenu.edu

Abstract

In this session, Dr. Martha Cheney & Dr. Lisa McIntyre-Hite will share insights and emerging effective practices rooted in research and their experience designing an undergraduate and a graduate direct-assessment CBE program. After developing and launching Walden’s first direct-assessment CBE program, they made improvements and iterated on the curriculum model for undergraduate students. With session participants, presenters will explore challenges, insights, and effective practices that emerged from their work and will share examples of key elements of the competency-based curricula they have developed. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions about the challenges and opportunities related to the development and implementation of CBE programs.

Presenter Bio

Martha Cheney, EdD, is the program director for graduate and undergraduate competency-based early childhood programs in the Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership at Walden University. In addition to her commitment to the early childhood field, her professional interests include educator preparation and innovative models for adult education.

Lauren Cifuentes

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, TX

Building ARCS for CBE: Motivation in Instructors

Building ARCS for CBE: Motivation in Instructors

Lauren Cifuentes Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, TX Lauren.Cifuentes@tamucc.edu

Abstract

We explore avoidance and/or adoption motivators to identify effective tactics for motivating instructors to build a CBE degree program. We use Keller’s (2010) ARCS motivation model to identify types of tactics that might be effective. ARCS stand for attention, relevance, confidence, and satisfaction, required motivators that promote flow within a design and development project. “Motivation refers broadly to what people desire, what they choose to do, and what they commit to do,” (Keller, p. 3). Instructors’ choices to adopt CBE depend upon their expectations that CBE programs can facilitate student success and are a valuable solution to problems in higher education, such as cost and ability to serve underrepresented populations. Such positive expectations are prerequisites for commitment. However, adoption of CBE is not simply attitudinal; it involves time commitment and formulating a concrete plan as to when and how to accomplish the goal. With surveys and interviews of instructors, we will identify, what ARCS interfere with or contribute to their attitudes toward CBE.

Presenter Bios

Dr. Lauren Cifuentes is Professor and Director of Distance Education and Learning Technologies at TAMU-CC. Her recent interests are focused on learning designs and administration for distance education.

Laura Chrisco

Learning Objects, Inc. – UT Austin

Texas OnCourse: Streamlining Student Pathways to Postsecondary and Career Success

Texas OnCourse: Streamlining Student Pathways to Postsecondary and Career Successhrisco Learning Objects, Inc. UT Austin laura.chrisco@austin.utexas.edu

Abstract

Texas OnCourse is a statewide initiative to streamline student pathways to postsecondary and career success by providing online training and resources for educators, students and families. Phase 1 provides a CBE, micro-credential learning environment for high school advisors and counselors, students, and parents across the state.

Presenter Bio

Laura Chrisco is Higher Education Policy Coordinator at UT Austin. Prior to coming to UT, Laura received her Master’s in Education Policy from Harvard University, and worked for five academic years as a KIPP through College Counselor. At KIPP Austin she helped students gain acceptance to schools across the nation including: Georgetown, Pomona, Franklin and Marshall, Syracuse, Middlebury, and Colby College to name a few. Her passion is to help students find a school they will thrive in both academically and socially.

Michael Atkinson is Senior Learning Engineer at Learning Objects, Inc. in Washington D.C. He received his Master’s in Educational Technology at Boise State University and is a PhD candidate in Instructional Psychology and Technology at Brigham Young University.

Joe Deegan

Jobs for the Future

Next-Generation CBE: Designing Competency-Based Education for Underprepared College Learners

Next-Generation CBE: Designing Competency-Based Education for Underprepared College Learners

Joe Deegan Jobs for the Future jdeegan@jff.org

Abstract

Millions of individuals are placed every year in college remediation programs, where they face daunting odds of success. One solution to this challenge may lie with Competency-Based Education (CBE), an educational approach that offers unique advantages over traditional education and may better meet the needs of underprepared learners.

Jobs for the Future will share the results of a comprehensive research and design project exploring how CBE, when combined with evidence-based remediation reform models and student support services, could serve students who qualify for enrollment in developmental education classes.

Building on the foundation of the modern CBE field, this session will explore what it would take to create a Next Generation CBE model of developmental education.

Presenter Bio

Joe Deegan is a program manager with Jobs for the Future (JFF), a national nonprofit that builds educational and economic opportunity for underserved populations in the United States. He provides research and technical assistance in support of programs that serve underprepared learners.

Prior to joining JFF, Mr. Deegan was a project manager with the Philadelphia Youth Network, where he directed the Opportunity Works program connecting opportunity youth to college using JFF’s Back on Track model. He has extensive experience managing college access programs and community-university partnerships.

Brooks Doherty

Rasmussen College

The CBE Faculty Path: Creating Space to Develop and Support New Ways Teaching, Learning, and Assessing

The CBE Faculty Path: Creating Space to Develop and Support New Ways Teaching, Learning, and Assessing Brooks Doherty Rasmussen College Brooks.Doherty@rasmussen.edu

Abstract

Teaching, learning, and assessment in Competency-Based Education (CBE) can look different from one institution to the next. It “can occur in a wide variety of forms and settings, and students can receive regular support and encouragement along the way” (C-BEN, 2016). As such, the journeys of college faculty who are leading CBE efforts around the nation have been replete with rewards and challenges. This presentation explores how colleges can support faculty in creating ongoing space to learn more about competency-based education across the United States and at one’s institution. Rasmussen College will offer its CBE history, how it is growing its CBE faculty team, what its organizational change has looked like, as well as its successes and barriers in growing organizational learning around CBE.

Presenter Bio

Brooks Doherty is AVP of Academic Innovation Rasmussen College. He is completing a doctorate in education at St. Mary’s University, earned an MA in literature from University College London, and graduated from the University of Minnesota with degrees in Political Science and English. His central areas of interest are competency-based education, developmental education, workforce preparedness, the relationship between liberal learning and professional learning, and Irish literature. Prior to his current work, Doherty taught remedial and college-level writing courses for students of varying disciplines.

 

Dr. Ali Esmaeili

South Texas College

Is Creating a CBE Course with Learning Outcomes in Mind Important?

Is Creating a CBE Course with Learning Outcomes in Mind Important?

Dr. Ali Esmaeili South Texas College esmaeili@southtexascollege.edu

Abstract

Creating a Competency-Based Education (CBE) course without having a clear set of Learning Outcomes is like driving to your destination without a map. A map provides clear instructions and expectations of where you should be and how to get there. Learning Outcomes provide the same process for creating a CBE course and ensure the student is competent in the subject matter they are studying at the end of their course. The Introduction to Sociology (SOCI-1301) course will be presented that will help to solidify competency-based courses and the importance of learning outcomes and assessment.

Presenters Bio

Dr. Ali Esmaeili is currently serving as the Dean of Math, Science and Bachelor Programs and University Relations at South Texas College, since 2008. Prior to fulfilling his position as Dean, Dr. Esmaeili served as Associate Dean for Bachelor Programs and South Texas College’s Professional Development Coordinator, Instructional Support Services Coordinator, Interim Division Dean for Developmental Studies, and Math and Science Division. He holds an Ed.D. in Education from Texas A&M University-Kingsville. He is one of the founding members of South Texas College and the Institution of Bachelor Degree Programs. He is a member of the National Council Staff Program and Organizational Development; Board Member of Community College Baccalaureate Association (CCBA), and former Executive Board Member of the Rio Grande Valley Council of Teachers of Mathematics. He has also served as a former public school board member for South Texas Educational Technology. Dr. Esmaeili has been an instrumental part of the college’s involvement in several national programs including Complete College America, UTeach, Science Olympiad, Developmental Education Initiatives, and STEP Project.

Brian Finnegan

Peirce College

CBE and ZPD: Designing high-stakes project-based assessments to motivate learning

CBE and ZPD: Designing high-stakes project-based assessments to motivate learning

Brian Finnegan Peirce College brfinnegan@peirce.edu

Abstract

This presentation will recount preliminary action research conducted during the inaugural year of Peirce College’s CBE program regarding the redesign of high-stakes project-based competency assessments to improve student motivation, reduce time to competency completion, and improve student learning performance.

Project-based assessments are attractive for their capacity to provide authenticity and strong connection to the professional world, as well as for the relative ease with which they can be validated by employers. When creating project-based assessments, curriculum designers should recognize those projects not only as assessment instruments but also as key learning artifacts whose form can significantly impact student achievement. Vygotsky’s “Zone of Proximal Development” (ZPD) provides educators with a valuable tool for explicating the circumstances that engender learning. The fundamental implication of ZPD is that students should be given tasks that are too difficult for them to do alone, but that are straightforward with assistance. Learning proceeds most effectively within this ZPD.

Because CBE is generally undertaken to support autonomous, independent, self-directed learning, traditional, socially-derived mechanisms of attaining the ZPD, such as direct interaction with a teacher or more skillful peer, are less central to its mechanisms. This increases the importance of designing effective learning artifacts that in CBE represent the main proxies for such interactions. Central among those artifacts, especially for practically minded adult students, is the high-stakes assessment. This presentation will recount Peirce’s preliminary work redesigning project-based assessments as effective learning tools.

Presenter Bio

Dr. Finnegan is Dean of Information Technology and General Education at Peirce College, where he also oversees CBE. Brian’s research interests include human-computer interaction and computer-supported collaborative learning. He holds a BS in Economics from Cornell University, an MS in Information Systems from Drexel University and an EdD in Higher Education Leadership from Temple University.

Haydn Fox

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Obtaining Administrator Buy-In for New CBE Degree Programs and Courses

Obtaining Administrator Buy-In for New CBE Degree Programs and Courses

Haydn Fox Texas A&M University-Commerce Haydn.Fox@tamuc.edu

Abstract

A common barrier to establishing new CBE degree programs or courses is obtaining buy-in by the college dean and university provost. We often find them to be skeptical and reluctant to fully embrace it, and in this, we find some of the same challenges that on-line education faced 10 to 15 years ago. A major problem is that CBE, in its current technological reincarnation, is relatively new and only poorly understood by these administrators. It can be a challenge even to get them to focus on and consider the proposal. Other issues include negative perceptions that it diminishes the role of faculty, it is comparable to the correspondence courses of years ago, it is sometimes being marketed to the wrong audiences, it disrupts existing procedures and processes such as financial aid, course scheduling, and faculty workload. A final concern is the question of whether CBE will be accepted by outside accrediting bodies, such as ABET (engineering and computer programs) and AACSB (business programs). This presentation will address each of these issues and discuss ways helpful to convincing administrators to give CBE a try.

Presenter Bio

Dr. Haydn A. “Chip” Fox is Associate Dean of the College of Science & Engineering at Texas A&M University–Commerce. He is tenured in the Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences, and is director of the environmental science degree program. His chief claim to fame is as sole author of a college-level physical science text published by Trunity in 2016.

Dr. Fox received his BS and MNS in Earth science from Southeast Missouri State University, and his PhD in geological sciences from the University of South Carolina. He has been a university instructor since 1989, teaching at the University of South Carolina, Southeast Missouri State University, Clemson University, and, since 1995, at Texas A&M University–Commerce. His courses have included numerous Earth science and environmental science courses

 

Tesha Gooch

University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, TX

The Nature of Coaching in Higher Education

The Nature of Coaching in Higher Education

Tesha Gooch University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, TX tgooch@umhb.edu

Abstract

The nature of coaching session will convey the significance and relevance of coaching within higher education. Information on establishing and building the relationship capital with students will be presented. Coaching provides a meaningful connection with students. The central focus is to build a rapport with students to help them achieve their goals. Coaches help students help themselves. The purpose of coaching is to help students achieve their purpose. Coaching brings about a sense of empowerment for students as it helps them to take ownership of their education. It encourages students to think critically and keeps them engaged in learning. Since coaching is personal, the student-coach interactions help coaches identify students’ goals and potential challenges that may prevent students from staying on task throughout their educational journey.

Presenter Bio

Tesha Gooch is the Student Success Coach for the MyWay Competency-Based Education (CBE) program at University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (UMHB). In this role, she has the opportunity to coach students and monitors their progress consistently throughout the duration of the program to promote student success. Ms. Gooch has earned an A.A. in Business Administration, a B.S. in Management of Human Resources and an M.S.Ed. in Leadership for Higher Education. She has seventeen years of higher education experience in student services.

Prior to her employment at UMHB, Ms. Gooch served as a Guidance Counselor for nine years in higher education and her background encompasses holistic advising/counseling, student support, and retention. Additionally, she currently serves as Adjunct Associate Professor, teaching Transition to College Success within the Student Development department at Austin Community College.

 

Alexandra Janney

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, TX

Building ARCS for CBE: Motivation in Instructors

Building ARCS for CBE: Motivation in Instructors

Alexandra Janney Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, TX alexandra.janney@tamucc.edu

Abstract

We explore avoidance and/or adoption motivators to identify effective tactics for motivating instructors to build a CBE degree program. We use Keller’s (2010) ARCS motivation model to identify types of tactics that might be effective. ARCS stand for attention, relevance, confidence, and satisfaction, required motivators that promote flow within a design and development project. “Motivation refers broadly to what people desire, what they choose to do, and what they commit to do,” (Keller, p. 3). Instructors’ choices to adopt CBE depend upon their expectations that CBE programs can facilitate student success and are a valuable solution to problems in higher education, such as cost and ability to serve underrepresented populations. Such positive expectations are prerequisites for commitment. However, adoption of CBE is not simply attitudinal; it involves time commitment and formulating a concrete plan as to when and how to accomplish the goal. With surveys and interviews of instructors, we will identify, what ARCS interfere with or contribute to their attitudes toward CBE.

Presenter Bios

Alexandra Janney is an Instructional Designer in the Office of Distance Education and Learning Technologies at TAMU-CC. Her special interests are in emerging technologies and innovative approaches to delivery of higher education.

Barbara Joseph

Wheelock College

Competency Assessment Guides - Comprehensive and Measurable Assessments That Align With Active Professional Development Objectives

Competency Assessment Guides – Comprehensive and Measurable Assessments That Align With Active Professional Development Objectives

Barbara Joseph Wheelock College bjoseph@wheelock.edu

Abstract

Teachers need to know what good teaching looks like. As part of their ongoing professional development, teachers participate in both mandatory (school-based) and personal enrichment (offered at the district level) professional development to advance their licensure or keep up with the latest trends in teaching. How do we know when teachers are expanding their knowledge and putting that knowledge into practice? Evidence of this is through demonstrating their skills through competency assessments. Teachers use our competency assessment guides as a way to ensure success in their demonstrations.

Presenter Bio

Barbara Joseph joined Wheelock College Aspire Institute in December 2010 as Project Manager for a NASA-funded grant. She successfully managed the development and rollout of eight graduate level online math and science courses for in-service elementary teachers. Her role as Learning Solutions Program Manager allows her to push the envelope in innovative ways for delivering professional development to teachers with an eye always towards process improvement. As a two-time recipient of the Silvia Earl Award, Barbara has co-developed and rolled out the STEM Activity App to over 3,000 users. Barbara is currently working on her fourth year of managing the development and rollout of competency-based hybrid professional development for teachers. She is working with various departments at Wheelock College to convert traditional undergraduate degree programs into competency-based degree programs.

Prior to joining Aspire, she spent over 20 years of her career in the tech industry, specifically software localization. She has held various positions from software engineer, director of technical services, to vice president of operations. She has a strong interest in math and has tutored math in multiple grade levels. As an early advisor to TenMarks Education, an online supplemental math program, Joseph was involved in consulting on the design and content of the program and website.

She earned her Bachelor’s degree with a double major in Computer Science and French and a minor in Mathematics from Boston College. She also earned her Entrepreneurial Management Certificate from Babson College.

Patty Kallman

University of Houston

Do you have the guts? Improving CBE through the use of student feedback

Do you have the guts? Improving CBE through the use of student feedback

Patty Kallman University of Houston mpattykallman@gmail.com

Abstract

Student feedback can be a crucial step in the evaluation and growth of a teacher, program, and school. During this presentation, attendees will learn about the research behind the use of student feedback and its application in Competency Based Education programs at the higher education level. We will discuss different methods of gathering student feedback, as well as how to take this data and make changes in order to improve your CBE program. Attendees will learn about what steps to take in order to create an instrument they can use immediately and over the course to time to continually grow and improve.

Presenter Bio

Patty Kallman is a Ph.D. student at the University of Houston in the department of Curriculum and Instruction, with a focus on teacher education. Her research involves student engagement and researching student dropout rates. She also teaches full time at St. Thomas’ Episcopal School in Houston, Texas.

 

Joann Kozyrev

UTx: University of Texas System

The Power of a Skills Ledger

The Power of a Skills Ledger

Joann Kozyrev UTx: University of Texas System jkozyrev@utx.edu

Abstract

Skills Ledgers can empower digital program and instructional design in ways that drive personalized learning and assessment pathways with digital-based knowledge, alternative credentialing, and academic-industry partnerships. A skills ledger is a dynamic registry of the marketable skills required for success across multiple domains of expertise and occupational roles in a professional field of work. Each skill in the ledger represents a self-contained, marketable skill and is tagged with content and assessment activities. UTx, part of the University of Texas System, has been using skills ledgers as a tool to empower digital and hybrid program and instructional design across multiple contexts from undergraduate degree and alternative credential opportunities to graduate degree and professional development certificate programs.

Presenter Bio

In 2014, Joann Kozyrev became a founding member of the leadership team at UTx, The Institute for Transformational Learning at The University of Texas System. The UTx mandate is to collaborate with University of Texas System campus leaders and faculty, students, and industry partners to develop future models of education and technology to make learning flexible, personalized, and data-driven. As the Executive Director for Learning Innovation, Joann leads a team of highly accomplished professionals with expertise in content development, online learning & assessment, high impact pedagogy & educational technology, and program & curriculum design.

Prior to joining UTx, Joann fed her avid curiosity for learning by publishing and managing diverse educational publishing product lines as English as a Second Language (ESL), Developmental English, Philosophy, Religion, and Introduction to Psychology first at Houghton Mifflin and then at Cengage Learning.

Joann taught English as a Second Language at Penn State, Ohio University and University of California Santa Barbara and as a volunteer at a family shelter called Transition House, but never managed to turn language teaching into an opportunity for world travel. Instead, she was a student of several languages, but has forgotten most of them. Other than English, she remains fluent only in Russian.

While Joann is proud of the ESL textbooks she has written as well as her degrees from Juniata College (BA Russian/English) and The Pennsylvania State University (MA TESOL), she still secretly wishes that she could swim and play piano like her 12-year old daughter or create beautiful contemporary paintings like her husband Dimitri.

Tamika Malone

Texas A&M – Commerce

CBE and Financial Aid Worlds Collide: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

CBE and Financial Aid Worlds Collide: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Tamika Malone, Texas A&M – Commerce tamika.malone@tamuc.edu

Abstract

How Texas A&M-Commerce navigated and continues to evolve in the fluid world of competency-based education and philosophy with the rigidity of federal financial aid regulations and inflexibility of financial aid management and student systems.

Presenter Bio

Tamika Malone, from OK, started in telecom with MCI WorldCom as Planning Engineer for 6 years moving to Level 3 Communications for 2 years. Financial aid career began in 2011 in Tulsa. Moving to TX in May 2014 began at Texas A&M – Commerce as a Financial Aid Advisor. After a year and a half, she was promoted to the Financial Aid Processing Coordinator for Special Programs, specifically dedicated to financial aid for the competency-based Organizational Leadership program. She received a BS in Business Administration; Management Information Systems from the University of Oklahoma in 1999 and an MBA in Electronic Business from the University of Phoenix in 2001. Currently, she is pursuing an MS in Technology Management at Texas A&M – Commerce and will graduate Spring 2018.

Jessica Mason

American Institutes for Research

On the Path to Success: Early Evidence of the Efficacy of Postsecondary CBE Programs

On the Path to Success: Early Evidence of the Efficacy of Postsecondary CBE Programs

Jessica Mason American Institutes for Research jmason@air.org

Abstract

As CBE programs launch, program leaders need to be able to answer questions from institutional leaders and policymakers: do they work? Are they worth the investment? Similarly, existing programs need to be able to measure their progress toward goals and engage in continuous improvement processes. To begin to answer some of these questions, researchers from American Institutes for Research will provide an early look at characteristics and student outcomes in CBE programs and key steps for program evaluation. They will present findings from an early study of student outcomes in six established CBE programs, addressing five questions:

  1. What are the characteristics of programs being offered?
  2. What are the demographic characteristics and educational goals of enrollees?
  3. What do the data tell us about student outcomes in CBE, in contrast to students in traditional programs?
  4. What data are used to track student performance and improve programs?
  5. What data gaps concerning these questions remain?

They will also share important steps for program leaders who are interested in evaluating their programs or using data to inform improvement.

Presenter Bio

Kelle Parsons is a researcher at the American Institutes for Research. She has more than five years of experience as in higher education research, policy, and administration roles. Her current areas of focus include evaluating postsecondary student success initiatives, organizational change in postsecondary settings, postsecondary models of competency-based education, and early labor market outcomes. Prior to joining AIR, she served as a policy analyst at the National Governors Association, providing technical assistance to state policymakers around postsecondary issues. Previously, she worked in institutional administration and research roles at the University of Michigan.

Jessica Mason, Ph.D. is a researcher at AIR with expertise in postsecondary student success and college readiness. Her current areas of focus include college and career readiness and success, postsecondary competency-based education, and alternative forms of student financial aid. She has expertise in qualitative and quantitative methodologies, and is currently serving as an evaluation team lead for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Frontier Set Evaluation, an evaluation of student success interventions at 35 postsecondary institutions. She received her Ph.D. in social and comparative analysis in education from the University of Pittsburgh.

Lisa McIntyre-Hite, PhD

Walden University

Competency-Based Curriculum Development and Continuous Improvement

Competency-Based Curriculum Development and Continuous Improvement

Lisa McIntyre-Hite, PhD Walden University Lisa.mcintyre-hite@laureate.net

Abstract

In this session, Dr. Martha Cheney & Dr. Lisa McIntyre-Hite will share insights and emerging effective practices rooted in research and their experience designing an undergraduate and a graduate direct-assessment CBE program. After developing and launching Walden’s first direct-assessment CBE program, they made improvements and iterated on the curriculum model for undergraduate students. With session participants, presenters will explore challenges, insights, and effective practices that emerged from their work and will share examples of key elements of the competency-based curricula they have developed. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions about the challenges and opportunities related to the development and implementation of CBE programs.

Presenter Bio

Lisa McIntyre-Hite, Ph.D., is the Executive Director of Product Innovation for Walden University’s Center for Learning Innovation. Her professional passion is rooted in the desire to expand access to higher education. She leads competency-based curriculum development efforts for Walden University’s Tempo Learning, one of six programs accredited nationwide to offer a direct assessment, competency-based curriculum. Much of her research and work is focused on competency-based education in higher education.

Dr. Emma L. Miller

South Texas College

Is Creating a CBE Course with Learning Outcomes in Mind Important?

Is Creating a CBE Course with Learning Outcomes in Mind Important?

Dr. Emma L. Miller South Texas College emiller@southtexascollege.edu

Abstract

Creating a Competency-Based Education (CBE) course without having a clear set of Learning Outcomes is like driving to your destination without a map. A map provides clear instructions and expectations of where you should be and how to get there. Learning Outcomes provide the same process for creating a CBE course and ensure the student is competent in the subject matter they are studying at the end of their course. The Introduction to Sociology (SOCI-1301) course will be presented that will help to solidify competency-based courses and the importance of learning outcomes and assessment.

Presenters Bio

Dr. Emma L. Miller has been in higher education administration in the state of Texas for nearly 20 years. She has a PhD in Applied Management and Decision Science with a concentration in Leadership and Organizational Change from Walden University. Currently, Dr. Miller is the Program Chair for the Competency-Based Education Bachelor of Applied Science in Organizational Leadership program at South Texas College as well as the advisor for the National Society of Leadership and Success South Texas College Chapter. In addition, Dr. Miller has also been an Academic Dean with Brightwood College and a Director of Academic Affairs for the University of Phoenix McAllen, TX campus. As a researcher, she has focused on mentoring examining how it relates to student retention and attrition and its impact on the institution. She has written in books, international journals and presented in local and international conferences. Dr. Miller has co-authored a book: “Mentoring Diverse Populations” published by Linus Publishing and most recently co-authored a chapter “Survey Research Methods” for the book: Education Research: An African approach published by South Africa Oxford University Press as well as co-authored “Education Diplomacy in Mentoring Diverse Populations” in the International Journal of Early Childhood Education. In addition, Dr. Miller serves as Senior Advisor for the non-profit organization Blue Marble Space Institute of Science.

Carlos Morales

Tarrant County College District, TX

A Collaborative Lift: Lessons Learned in Creating an Institution’s Initial CBE Program

A Collaborative Lift: Lessons Learned in Creating an Institution’s Initial CBE Program

Carlos Morales Tarrant County College District, TX

Abstract

Competency-based education is a popular discussion topic within higher education. Current credit-based courses require students to register for and complete a course within a specific time frame such as a semester or quarter. CBE assumes students can move forward in their degree program when they demonstrate mastery of specific competencies. This presentation will provide an overview of how a community college campus designed and developed its first CBE certificate in Teller Operations. In addition, conference attendees will learn good practices and lessons learned gained by the presenter at his institution. This information will help institutions new to CBE initiatives gain information that will guide their efforts to design and develop their initial CBE programs.

Presenter Bio

Carlos Morales, Ph.D. is the founding President of TCC Connect Campus, the largest and fastest growing of the six campuses that comprise Tarrant County College District, which delivers eLearning and Weekend College programs. Carlos is responsible for the educational endeavors of more than 20,000 students served by 500+ faculty. As president, he manages, directs, and implements TCC policies, programs, and operating strategies for eLearning and Weekend College initiatives for the College.

Dr. Morales has extensive online and classroom teaching experience in the areas of Biology Science Teaching, Education and Instructional Technology. Carlos has s published internationally peer-reviewed journal articles on the topics of instructional technology and as an instructional technology scholar, he actively participates as a peer reviewer on editorial boards for journals in the United States, Puerto Rico and the European Union. Morales graduated from the Inter-American University of Puerto Rico, with bachelors and masters degrees In Biology and Science Education, and received his doctorate, with a dissertation on Constructivist Learning Environments in Online Course Design, from Capella University. He was a Frye fellow in 2009 and in 2012 the American Association of State Colleges and Universities named him a Millennium Leadership Fellow.

Jennifer Nailos Ed.D.

Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board

Texas Affordable Baccalaureate Program

Texas Affordable Baccalaureate Program

Jennifer Nailos Ed.D. Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Jennifer.Nailos@thecb.state.tx.us

Abstract

The Texas Affordable Baccalaureate (TAB) session will introduce conference participants to the program’s logic model and application of qualitative and quantitative measures to assess progress toward the TAB outcomes. Current programs utilize diverse approaches to developing affordable baccalaureate programs on their respective campuses. Students benefit from a variety of learning materials, instructional delivery modes, and pathways to degree completion, including competency-based education. This session will share the outputs, outcomes, and long-term impact goals of TAB programs and highlight multiple strategies institutions can consider to develop their own affordable baccalaureate program.

Presenter Bio

Jennifer Nailos, Ed.D., has experience co-coordinating numerous college and university participants on large-scale projects, including the National Survey of Student Engagement. At the THECB, her roles include working with colleges and universities, staff, subject matter experts, and other stakeholders, to assure quality academic programming through program review, assessment, evaluation, grant management, and policy administration. She works with several grant programs, including the Texas Affordable Baccalaureate Grant Program and represents the agency on the Competency-Based Education Network. Jennifer’s professional experience includes student affairs, assessment, and research at several universities across the US. She holds an Ed.D. in Higher Education from Indiana University, M.A. in Higher Education & Student Affairs from The Ohio State University, and B.A.s in History and English from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.

Kelle Parsons

American Institutes for Research

On the Path to Success: Early Evidence of the Efficacy of Postsecondary CBE Programs

On the Path to Success: Early Evidence of the Efficacy of Postsecondary CBE Programs

Kelle Parsons American Institutes for Research kparsons@air.org

Abstract

As CBE programs launch, program leaders need to be able to answer questions from institutional leaders and policymakers: do they work? Are they worth the investment? Similarly, existing programs need to be able to measure their progress toward goals and engage in continuous improvement processes. To begin to answer some of these questions, researchers from American Institutes for Research will provide an early look at characteristics and student outcomes in CBE programs and key steps for program evaluation. They will present findings from an early study of student outcomes in six established CBE programs, addressing five questions:

  1. What are the characteristics of programs being offered?
  2. What are the demographic characteristics and educational goals of enrollees?
  3. What do the data tell us about student outcomes in CBE, in contrast to students in traditional programs?
  4. What data are used to track student performance and improve programs?
  5. What data gaps concerning these questions remain?

They will also share important steps for program leaders who are interested in evaluating their programs or using data to inform improvement.

Presenter Bio

Kelle Parsons is a researcher at the American Institutes for Research. She has more than five years of experience as in higher education research, policy, and administration roles. Her current areas of focus include evaluating postsecondary student success initiatives, organizational change in postsecondary settings, postsecondary models of competency-based education, and early labor market outcomes. Prior to joining AIR, she served as a policy analyst at the National Governors Association, providing technical assistance to state policymakers around postsecondary issues. Previously, she worked in institutional administration and research roles at the University of Michigan.

Steve Phillips

Thomas Edison State University

Working Backwards from Open: The Story of Thomas Edison State University’s Openly Licensed – and Competency-Based – General Education Program alsoDesigning for Evidence: Challenges and Benefits of Evidencing Competencies (PANEL member)

Working Backwards from Open: The Story of Thomas Edison State University’s Openly Licensed – and Competency-Based – General Education Program

 

Steve Phillips Thomas Edison State University sphillips@tesu.edu

Abstract:

Leveraging our experience curating and framing OER, along with TESU’s expertise in creating high-stakes assessments aligned with open content, we are working to create an openly licensed competency-based general education program that will challenge student’s conception of learning, by placing them in control of their own educational destiny. Students will be encouraged to interact with, change, and improve program resources, while receiving structured support from coaches and mentors. Further, the possibility of a more direct path allows for a greater focus on pertinent, applicable, and integrated content. This presentation will outline TESU’s model for competency-based education; discuss the logistics of developing our program, and define our objectives for the future of this pilot.

Presenter Bio:

Steve Phillips serves as an Assistant Director for Thomas Edison State University’s Center for the Assessment of Learning (CAL). His primary responsibility is to develop programs that position the college as a leader in measuring learning outside of the classroom or “untethered” learning. This includes both competency-based and open education initiatives. Prior to joining the University, Phillips designed open courses and assessments for the Saylor Academy in Washington D.C. He has an M.A. in History from George Washington University and Bachelors of Arts degrees in both History and International Studies from The Pennsylvania State University.

Will Pierce

Davis Applied Technology College, UT

Validating Competency-Based Education

Validating Competency-Based Education

Will Pierce Davis Applied Technology College, UT

Abstract

Competency-Based Education can present a couple of challenges. Among these potential challenges are teacher-student interactions and consistency in the measurement of competencies. In this presentation, we will discuss possible solutions to student to teacher engagement through the curriculum development process. We will also present methods and examples to validate the reliability of assessments through the use of occupational advisory committees, rubrics, and ongoing data. Students who perceive the support of their instructors through intentional and methodical teacher-student interactions will be more successful in the program and in the workplace. Students, and employers, value consistency in instruction and in measuring competencies. This consistency can be achieved through the use of clear and detailed rubrics. In this presentation, we will outline the methods of gaining support from industry experts and the methods used to transfer the recommendations of subject matter experts to effective curriculum including student to teacher engagement and valid assessments.

Presenter Bio

Dr. Will Pierce is the Vice President of Quality and Development at the Davis Technical College. After serving 8 years in the United States Marine Corps, Will began a career in the electrical industry. He owned a successful contracting business before transitioning into higher education. He worked at SLCC for five years managing technical programs, and joined the DATC team six years ago. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Workforce Education, a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership, and a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership.

 

Dr. Wendi C. Prater

Lone Star College

Competency-Based Education Online Teaching Certification Program – The Faculty Experience

Competency-Based Education Online Teaching Certification Program – The Faculty Experience

Dr. Wendi C. Prater

Lone Star College

wendi.c.prater@lonestar.edu

Abstract:

CBE for faculty professional development is an increasing trend. The proposed presentation examines one model within an institution. Be cautious to not conflate online/hybrid with CBE. There are many CBE models and though this one uses CBE to discuss online/hybrid the difference should be distinct.

Presenter Bio:

Current Position and Past Experience Wendi Prater is the Associate Vice Chancellor of Lone Star College Online, the online arm of the Lone Star College System. She has many years of experience in corporate leadership and higher education. In her current role, she provides overall strategic leadership for all aspects of LSC Online which serves over 40,000 students. Lone Star College is one of the fastest growing community colleges in the US, serving approximately 95,000 students, and is committed to student success and credential completion.

Prior to her employment at Lone Star College, Dr. Prater worked at Western Governors University. WGU is a nonprofit online university founded and supported by 19 U.S. Governors that was the pioneer institution in competency-based education and continues to lead this course delivery model today.

Prater has demonstrated leadership in online education and design, including competency based education and strategic planning. She has led global energy and technology companies IT Infrastructure projects.

Education, Honors and Achievements Prater earned her B.S. in Family Consumer Science from McNeese State University, M.A. in Human Ecology from Louisiana Tech University, M.S. in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from Louisiana Tech University and a Ph.D in Educational Administration, Community College Leadership Program from The University of Texas at Austin. She also holds a SPHR certification (Senior Professional in Human Resources) from HRCI the Human Resources Certification Institute and and a Society of Human Resource Management – Senior Certified Professional (SHRM–SCP) certification from SHRM. Personal Details and Community Involvement She enjoys time outdoors camping, boating, gardening and biking. Also, a serial film buff, techno geek, and maker.

Maria Ramos

Texas A&M – Commerce

CBE and Financial Aid Worlds Collide: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

CBE and Financial Aid Worlds Collide: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Maria Ramos Texas A&M – Commerce maria.ramos@tamuc.edu,

Abstract

How Texas A&M-Commerce navigated and continues to evolve in the fluid world of competency-based education and philosophy with the rigidity of federal financial aid regulations and inflexibility of financial aid management and student systems.

Presenter Bio

Maria Ramos has 39 years’ experience in financial aid since graduating with a BA degree in Liberal Arts & Sciences; double major art and psychology from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. Starting as Financial Aid Advisor at the University of Illinois-Medical Center she transitioned a year later to Assistant Director for Financial Aid. After moving to TX in 1985, she became, in 1987, Director of Financial Aid at Richland Community College (DCCCD). In 1995 she moved to the University of Texas – Dallas until fall, 2007 leaving UTD to concentrate on expansion of a family business which she and her husband still operate. In 2007 she became interim Director of Financial Aid & Scholarships at Texas A&M – Commerce becoming permanent after 18 months a position she still holds.

Carlos Rivers

Texas A&M – Commerce

Developing a Data-Driven CBE Program

Developing a Data-Driven CBE Program

Carlos Rivers Texas A&M University-Commerce carlos.rivers@tamuc.edu

Abstract

In this session, presenter covers metrics the Institute for Competency-Based Education has been tracking for the Texas Affordable Baccalaureate Program at Texas A&M University-Commerce that may serve as a framework for institutions that are planning to develop similar CBE programs. The presenter provides an insider’s look at how metrics are calculated and automated for the state’s first SACSCOC-approved competency-based baccalaureate degree offered by a public university in Texas. Sessions also will cover student time and cost savings scenarios, predictive analytics findings and post-graduation survey outcomes.

Presenter Bio

Carlos Rivers serves as the Operations Research Analyst for the Institute for CompetencyBased Education. He focuses primarily on historical data collection and analysis for Texas A&M UniversityCommerce’s Affordable Baccalaureate Degree and establishing and tracking program specific metrics that can potentially serve as a framework for universities planning to launch similar competency-based programs. In this position, Mr. Rivers has provided baseline data to the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) that has served as a starting point for grant applications to fund additional sites. Mr. Rivers also has provided data and analytic insight for university-wide enrollment and retention initiatives for the Enrollment Management Division both in online and offline applications. His publications on competency-based education and data analytics have appeared in such venues as The Journal of Competency-Based Education, EDUCAUSE Review, WCET Frontiers and The EvoLLLution.

Rivers earned an M.B.A from Texas A&M University-Commerce, ranking in the top 10 percentile of his graduating class. He obtained his B.A. in International Business with minors in Economics from Mercyhurst University, where he graduated magna cum laude.

Sarah Sanchez

University of Mary Hardin-Baylor

Build it with who you have and for free: Deep dive into UMHB’s CBE curriculum design process

Abstract:

MyWay at UMHB is a SACSCOC-accredited program that launched in August of 2016. On the 15th of each month, new students can start the $3000, all-you-can-master, six-month subscription CBE program. Resources are free to students as we built the curriculum using open education resources and those freely available through the university’s library databases. Students have a Success Coach to guide and support them in meeting their educational goals. During this session, participants will get an in-depth look at how we managed the build-out of the curriculum, including the roles of the “curricular architects,” Subject Matter Experts, the online CBE design workshop, the Open Education Resources Coordinator, quality reviews, and the instructional design team. Participants may view an example of a competency, associated curriculum, and a sample assessment. From my vantage point as the Director of Instructional Design, I will share documents maintained to map competencies back to traditional courses, show you how we store back-up files and videos, and describe how this process differed from the one used to design traditional online courses. Presenter Bio Sarah serves as the Director for Alternative Modes of Delivery (AMD) at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (UMHB). She oversees the instructional design and development of online and CBE programs at UMHB. In three years, UMHB’s online program has grown from zero courses in mid-2014 to nearly fifty, including a fully online Master’s degree. The AMD department also supports the university’s CBE initiative and worked with SMEs to design and develop the SACSCOC-accredited undergraduate degree, MyWay at UMHB. Fall 2017 CBE offerings will include a new RN to BSN degree.

Presenter Bio:

Sarah serves as the Director for Alternative Modes of Delivery (AMD) at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (UMHB). She oversees the instructional design and development of online and CBE programs at UMHB. In three years, UMHB’s online program has grown from zero courses in mid-2014 to nearly fifty, including a fully online Master’s degree. The AMD department also supports the university’s CBE initiative and worked with SMEs to design and develop the SACSCOC-accredited undergraduate degree, MyWay at UMHB. Fall 2017 CBE offerings will include a new RN to BSN degree.

Natalie Skadra

Cengage

Designing for Evidence: Challenges and Benefits of Evidencing Competencies (PANEL member)

Natalie Skadra is the Director of Instructional Design and Delivery (IDD) at Cengage, parent company of Learning Objects. She has spent 20 years in higher education, including time spent teaching onground and online, but most of her responsibilities have been designing instruction for higher education institutions. In her current capacity, Natalie leads a team applying backwards design to curriculum design projects supporting competency-based learning. Natalie has an M.A. in Applied Linguistics and Teaching English from the University of Illinois, Chicago and a B.A. from The George Washington University.

Donna Smith

Texas A&M University – Commerce

Punctuated Disequilibrium: A Comparison of Retention Pattern in Degree Completion Programs including Competency Based Education

Punctuated Disequilibrium: A Comparison of Retention Pattern in Degree Completion Programs including Competency Based Education

Donna Smith Texas A&M University – Commerce Donna.Smith@tamuc.edu

Abstract

Competency Based Education (CBE) programs in the United States have gained significant momentum in recent years. With this renewed interest, the majority of relevant research seems to focus on best practices for institutions who want to implement CBE programs. However, the majority of institutional CBE programs are still within their start-up and infancy phases, and there is relatively little research about the actual impact of CBE programs on retention and completion in comparison to other traditional degree completion programs. The purpose of this study is to determine if there are any patterns that indicate whether CBE programs have a more effective impact on retention and completion as compared to two other degree completion programs at the same institution. Qualitative observations prompting this study suggest the stop–start pattern of successful graduates from CBE programs stop out for no more than two terms, whereas students who experience additional stop-outs are at an increased risk of not graduating. This study reviews the relevant data of the graduates of each of the three programs to determine whether this pattern is shown by the data, whether it is consistent with the degree completion programs, and whether this pattern can be predictive for student success in CBE programs. This research may prove to be important toward demonstrating the value of CBE education to universities who are considering implementing one or more CBE programs.

Presenter Bio

Dr. Donna Gayle Smith is the founding director of Texas A&M-Commerce‘s signature competency-based degree program, BAAS in Organizational Leadership. Since its launch in January 2014, the program has seen a phenomenal growth rate of 20+% every seven-week term while maintaining an average 87% retention rate. In CBE circles, Dr. Smith has become nationally known for the personal attention and positive intrusive advising service she and her staff give to each and every student in the program.

Dr. Smith received her BBA and MBA from Texas A&M-Commerce and her Ph.D. in Higher Education from the University of North Texas. Prior to coming to TAMU-C, Dr. Smith worked in Fortune 500 corporate, nonprofit, and governmental organizations and has managed numerous multi-million dollar projects. She has also spent many years as a private consultant to small businesses, conducting numerous training seminars, conferences, and workshops, and offering a number of specialized services to both new and established small businesses. In 2012, she received a $200,000 competitive grant from the Texas Workforce Commission. Dr. Smith has published a number of refereed journal articles, conference proceedings, conference presentations, and small business training materials related to all aspects of successful small business operations.

Laurent Snead

University of Houston

Do you have the guts? Improving CBE through the use of student feedback

Do you have the guts? Improving CBE through the use of student feedback

Laurent Snead University of Houston lsnead@central.uh.edu

Abstract

Student feedback can be a crucial step in the evaluation and growth of a teacher, program, and school. During this presentation, attendees will learn about the research behind the use of student feedback and its application in Competency Based Education programs at the higher education level. We will discuss different methods of gathering student feedback, as well as how to take this data and make changes in order to improve your CBE program. Attendees will learn about what steps to take in order to create an instrument they can use immediately and over the course to time to continually grow and improve.

Presenter Bio

Lauren Snead is a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Houston where she teaches Classroom Management and works with the Consistency Management & Cooperative Discipline Program. She is also the editor of the Texas Foreign Language Association Journal.

 

Rinki Suryavanshi

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, TX

Building ARCS for CBE: Motivation in Instructors

Building ARCS for CBE: Motivation in Instructors

Rinki Suryavanshi Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, TX

Abstract

We explore avoidance and/or adoption motivators to identify effective tactics for motivating instructors to build a CBE degree program. We use Keller’s (2010) ARCS motivation model to identify types of tactics that might be effective. ARCS stand for attention, relevance, confidence, and satisfaction, required motivators that promote flow within a design and development project. “Motivation refers broadly to what people desire, what they choose to do, and what they commit to do,” (Keller, p. 3). Instructors’ choices to adopt CBE depend upon their expectations that CBE programs can facilitate student success and are a valuable solution to problems in higher education, such as cost and ability to serve underrepresented populations. Such positive expectations are prerequisites for commitment. However, adoption of CBE is not simply attitudinal; it involves time commitment and formulating a concrete plan as to when and how to accomplish the goal. With surveys and interviews of instructors, we will identify, what ARCS interfere with or contribute to their attitudes toward CBE.

Presenter Bios

Dr. Rinki Suryavanshi is an Instructional Designer in the Office of Distance Education and Learning Technologies at TAMU-CC. Her interest is in designs for learning and human performance technologies.

Jeremy Tanner

Texas A&M – Commerce

CBE and Financial Aid Worlds Collide: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

CBE and Financial Aid Worlds Collide: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly Jeremy Tanner Texas A&M – Commerce jeremy.tanner@tamuc.edu

Abstract

How Texas A&M-Commerce navigated and continues to evolve in the fluid world of competency-based education and philosophy with the rigidity of federal financial aid regulations and inflexibility of financial aid management and student systems.

Presenter Bio

Jeremy Tanner, a former Information Technology (IT) specialist, worked for 5 years in the IT department at Texas A&M – Texarkana. His financial aid career started at Texas A&M – Texarkana in 2013 as a Financial Aid Specialist, quickly transitioning to a more technical role to include systems and business analysis. In 2014 Jeremy moved to Texas A&M-Commerce as Financial Aid Processing Coordinator for Special Programs moving to the current role as Assistant Director – Financial Aid and Scholarships, Technology Support and Compliance, at Texas A&M – Commerce in 2015. He received his BS degree in Mass Communication at Texas A&M – Texarkana and an MS degree with a focus in Communications and History.

Anna Van Wie

Learning Objects

Designing for Evidence: Challenges and Benefits of Evidencing Competencies (PANEL member)

Anna Van Wie is the Learning Solutions Director at Learning Objects in DC. Anna supports curriculum design and development projects with LO’s partner institutions. LO’s projects focus on outcomes-based and competency-based programs that provide a personalized learning experience for students.  Prior to joining Learning Objects in 2017, Anna held curriculum design and learning science positions at University of Maryland University College and Western Governors University.

Laurel Williamson

San Jacinto College

Giving Credit where Credit is Due

Giving Credit where Credit is Due: A Process for Awarding Credit for Prior Learning

Laurel Williamson San Jacinto College, TX laurel.williamson@sjcd.edu

Abstract

Beginning in 2014, San Jacinto College convened a taskforce of faculty, staff, and administrators with the goal of creating multiple opportunities for students to earn Credit for Prior Learning (CPL). The primary work of the task force targeted several different populations: returning veterans, high school students, incumbent workers, and others with demonstrated skills in certain academic and technical areas. The taskforce identified significant course credits that could be awarded based on the categories listed. A Credit for Prior Learning Manual was created in 2015 to guide students, advisors, and administrators in the proper policies and procedures for awarding of applicable credit. This presentation will focus on the processes used to develop the Manual and the progress of the initiative.

Presenter Bio

A lifelong learner, Dr. Laurel V. Williamson is an innovative, visionary leader with over 28 years of career experience in community colleges. She currently serves as the Deputy Chancellor and President of San Jacinto Community College in Pasadena, Texas. She is a respected leader, instructor, and administrator and has substantial background in overseeing instruction and student services programs. Dr. Williamson received the Carl M. Nelson award for administrative leadership from the Texas Association of Community Colleges, the National Association of Developmental Education award for administrative support of development education, and the Outstanding Student Advocate award from the National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition. During her tenure at San Jacinto College, the institution has been named one of the Aspen Institute top five colleges in the nation and selected as one of thirty colleges in the American Association of Community College Pathways Project and as a member of the Aspen Institute Frontier Set.

 

Kimberly Ziebarth

Davis Applied Technology College, UT

Validating Competency-Based Education

Validating Competency-Based Education

Kimberly Ziebarth Davis Applied Technology College, UT

Abstract

Competency-Based Education can present a couple of challenges. Among these potential challenges are teacher-student interactions and consistency in the measurement of competencies. In this presentation, we will discuss possible solutions to student to teacher engagement through the curriculum development process. We will also present methods and examples to validate the reliability of assessments through the use of occupational advisory committees, rubrics, and ongoing data. Students who perceive the support of their instructors through intentional and methodical teacher-student interactions will be more successful in the program and in the workplace. Students, and employers, value consistency in instruction and in measuring competencies. This consistency can be achieved through the use of clear and detailed rubrics. In this presentation, we will outline the methods of gaining support from industry experts and the methods used to transfer the recommendations of subject matter experts to effective curriculum including student to teacher engagement and valid assessments.

Presenter Bio

Kim Ziebarth is the Vice President of Instruction at the Davis Technical College. Kim has worked as an Information Technology instructor, a Senior Network Administrator, is a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer and Certified Internet Webmaster. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Boise State University and Master’s Degree in Education from Utah State University, where she was recognized as an Academic Scholar.