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Competency Based Language

I Gede Putu Adhitya Prayoga
I Putu Sujana

The Nature of the Method


A description of the essential skills, knowledge, attitudes, and

behaviors required for effective performance of a real-world task or
activity (Mrowicki ;1986)

Any attribute of an individual that contributes to the successful

performance of a task, job, function, or activity in an academic
setting and/or a work setting
(Richards and Rodgers ;2001)

In the United States
(1970s )

Richards and
Rodgers ;2001


It focuses on outcomes of learning.

It emphasizes what the learners are expected to do rather than what they are
expected to learn about.
The language used is seen as a medium of interaction and communication
between people who want to achieve specific goals and purposes

Key Features
Auerbach (1986)
Language functioning in society.
Concrete tasks of Life skills (language forms/skills)
Performance-centered orientation
Modularized instruction (into manageable parts)
Outcomes; Outcomes are public knowledge, known and
agreed upon by both learner and teacher
Continuous and ongoing assessment.
Demonstrated mastery of performance
Individualized, student-centered instruction.

The Syllabus of CBLT

It is designed not
around the notion of
subject knowledge
but around the
notion of
(Richards &
Rodgers, 2001,).

The teacher provides

a list of
competencies which
the course is going to
deal with, and these
are typically
required of students
in life role
(Schenck ;1978)

CBLT is an outcomebased approach also

influences the
syllabus, especially
the kind of
assessment which is

CBLT is an outcome-based approach also

influences the syllabus, especially the kind of
assessment which is used

CBLT differ from Traditional

CBLT focuses on how the
students can use the language.
Competency-based Language
Teaching is designed not
around the notion of subject
knowledge but around the
notion of competency

Traditional Approach focuses

on the knowledge about the

(Richards & Rodgers, 2001, p.144).

Role of the Teacher

1. The teacher becomes a facilitator rather
than information-giver.
2. Teacher provides the materials, the
activities, and the practice
opportunities to their students (Paul,
3. Teacher plans the teaching and learning
4. Teacher designs specific rubrics for
assessing each competency.

Role of the students

Students will no longer be able to rely only
on the teacher and the classroom to be the
primary sources of information.
Students take an active part in their own
learning and work toward being autonomous
learners. (Jones et al., 1994).
They learn to think critically and to adapt
and transfer knowledge across a variety of
settings. (Richards & Rogers, 2001; Sturgis,
Students must be willing to challenge, to
question, and to initiate in the CBLT
classroom (Marcellino, 2005).

The Techniques How to
(Richards & Rodgers, 2001)

Learning Activities
1. Systematically designed activities
2. Real-world task: activity linked to the field
of work and to social survival
3. Work Schedule : Job application and Job

Reading Competencies
Writing Competencies
Assessment Tasks
Sample Texts




At the beginning of a course the students have to go through an initial


Then the students are grouped on the basis of their current English
proficiency level, their learning pace, their needs, and their social goals for
learning English .

Furthermore, a course based on CBLT is divided into three stages, which

the students have to go through in order to successfully finish the course.

At Stages 1 and 2 the learners deal with competencies which are related to
general language development.

At Stage 3 the students are grouped on the basis of their learning goals and
competencies are defined according syllabus.

The Strength and weaknesses of CBLT


The positive consequence

of implementing CBLT is
that it serves as an agent
of change and it improves
teaching and learning
(Docking, 1994).

1. Since competency-based approaches

to teaching and assessment offer
teachers an opportunity to revitalize
their education and training program,
quality of assessment can be
2. Students become active learners.
3. Students are able to use the language
in the real context.

It is very difficult to develop lists of
competencies for every specific
situation (Tollefson, 1985)

Describing an activity in terms of a

set of different competencies is not
enough in order to deal with the
complexity of the activity as a whole
(Richards & Rodgers, 2001, p.148).
Teachers will have to devote large
amounts of time to creating
activities related to the specific skills
necessary to fulfill the competency
Students may be resistant to this
approach in the beginning,
especially if they do not see any real
need for learning the language.