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Note From the Editor: Corona and Competences

Aurora Brief Reviews No. 17 July 17 2020

September 2020

The Corona pandemic underlines the need to improve our toolkit and language to integrate transversal competences into our curricula. How so?

Corona has forced all of our universities to move education online – and to move to the assessment of student learning through digital means.
If the digital assessment of subject-related knowledge and skills already has its particular challenges (proctoring, data protection, students with special needs), digital assessments of “more vague” general academic or (inter)personal competences are even more difficult. One complication is that assessment of how students develop these skills often needs to be ongoing (formative assessment) rather than through end-of-term exams. But the underlying challenge is that general academic competence (like critical thinking or information analysis) and personal competences (like working with others and effective communication to different target groups) still rely on the implicit knowledge and convictions of the assessing teachers.

To make an assessment – and development – of transversal skills effective in the online education of the post-Corona new normal, we will need to be better at articulating the learning outcomes in general academic and personal competences. This is what Aurora aims for with its Aurora Competence Framework.

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