Competency based training interactions

Jul 11, 2015

This is more a methodology question so I hope I have put it in the right place. I am constrained to make course materials as competency based as possible using only Storyline to record and report the competency. I find it easy enough to write interactions and quizzes that are knowledge based, but much more difficult to write them so that they are competency based. This training involves skills, but does not include computer interaction skills that could be captured and simulated. The skills are the ability to interpret knowledge and find an appropriate response to a situation based on that knowledge.

Has anyone published a "cheat sheet" of samples of competency based interactions that can be used to trigger further creativity in my own context?

3 Replies
Bob S


Meaning no disrespect whatsoever, but isn't what you are describing the very heart of Instructional Design?  As IDs, we always ask that key question of what do we want the learner to be able to DO after the training.

There are tons of ID theories/methodologies, but perhaps the simplest to wrap one's head around is PAF.... present, apply, feedback. You might try taking one of your required competencies and breaking down the instruction into those three areas.  What do you need to present to them, how can you let them apply it, how will you provide meaningful feedback.  

If it's an "assimilate and apply knowledge" competency (which is rather unusual as a stand-alone competency, btw), then consider starting with the middle piece, Apply.  What situation/scenario that's relevant to them will they have to be able to apply this skill?  Then create a facsimile of that. Then build on either side of it (present info, provide feedback) to create a complete learning loop.

If you have a specific situation/industry in mind, please share and perhaps one of the heroes can toss out a few more pointed ideas.

Good luck!


Christine Kent

You are quite right, and perhaps I didn't explain myself well. Writing competency based training is easy. Writing competency based interactions and assessments in Storyline with no human intervention at any stage and with a finite budget is much trickier.

I would like some Storyline samples to show how far qualitative, not quantitative, interactions and assessment can be pushed in Storyline.

Many of the other samples I have seen only attempt to collect knowledge responses to factual information. They are not demonstrating competency. But maybe I have simply not found the best examples.

One example I personally love is this one, but even it is probably beyond our budget.! And that said, I am not sure it would comply with our requirement for competency based training as a standalone interaction. Is enough data being collected that proves the investigator is capable of doing the job?

Another one which I think goes as far as it is possible to go with a competency based approach is this one. It is also simple and cost effective to develop. . However, this one is still not demonstrating that the student has the ability to do anything more than select a response that someone else has dreamed up. It does not show they can dream up their own response. This could be rectifiied with essay style entry fields into which they type their own responses, but that would require human intervention to qualitatively assess the response. So to my mind, this is still not demonstrating competency.

I would be delighted to find I am missing something obvious. Samples that demonstrate competency as far as it is possible to take it in Storyline would be helpful. 

I am happy to learn from the best.

Bob S

Hi Christine,

So I am starting to understand this is less about learning and more about certification perhaps?  Specifically certifying competence without any human auditor/proctor/evaluator.

With that in mind...  yes, quite a challenge.  My first thought would be reach out to others in your same industry to see how they are certifying competencies currently.  There are precious few industries today I know of that use a "pure" electronic certification for soft-skills or competencies.

As you know, best practice typically suggests a MIX of evaluation/certification methodologies for critical roles. A classic example is the military where you must first attend skills/knowledge based schooling (on site), then complete self-study e-learning, be checked off on a wide variety of specific tasks by a trained evaluator, complete a minimal time in role/grade, and finally pass a comprehensive knowledge-based exam.

And even while some LMS's allow the upload of learner created documents, reports, etc.... that would still require a human evaluator to review.

All that being said... if you have no choice then you have no choice.  But perhaps the stakeholders will be open to a more comprehensive version of certifying that includes several elements to ensure true competence.

Truly.... good luck with this one. One of the harder challenges I've seen posted here.  I do hope one of the heroes has some magic words of advice for you!

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