1. Clarity: The first core concept of OBE is that of clarity for learners about which knowledge, skills and attitudes learners need to learn and how they need to learn them. This clarity manifests itself to learners in the following ways:
• Firstly through exit level outcomes that learners will need to attain at the end of a course of study
• Secondly through outcomes which represent the building blocks essential to achieve these exit level outcomes
• Thirdly through giving learners criteria against which tasks will be assessed before they embark on them – the tasks serve to help learners achieve the outcomes.
2. Continuous Assessment. Assessment needs to function as a tool to help learners to learn, through learning from mistakes and tutor comments, as well as the more traditional role in assessing the attainment of outcomes. This is what is meant by continuous assessment.
3. Applied competence. This is the demonstrated ability to perform tasks with understanding and reflexivity. Seeing as the tasks we set are to help learners achieve outcomes, the idea of applied competence also applies to achieving outcomes. Applied competence can be further broken down into:
• Practical competence (performance): The demonstrated ability to do something
• Foundational competence (understanding): The demonstrated ability to describe what one is doing theoretically and why one is doing it that articular way.
• Reflexive competence (reflexivity): The demonstrated ability to pass judgement on a course of action and to give reasoned argument on how it could be done differently or better where appropriate.