martes, 16 de diciembre de 2008



Competency-Based Education (CBE) is an educational movement which emerged in the United States in the 1970s. This movement presents a pattern that is focused on the outputs to learning. It defines the goals and objectives to be reached in such a way, that students´ knowledge, skills and behaviors, can be easily measured. Besides, students develop the ability to use their knowledge in real life situations.
In addition, Competency-Based Language Teaching (CBLT) follows the ideology of CBE, and it is perceived as a powerful agent which can have a positive impact on teaching, since through the implementation of the standards, both teachers and students can have a clear direction of what is expected to be achieved at the end of a course.
According to the theory of language learning, CBLT is based on function and interaction of language, what means that language is taught taking into account the social context and the communicative needs of students. On the other hand, it is also based on the behaviorist view, since it shares the principle that learners can infer language form from language function, thus, CBLT competences designers know exactly the vocabulary and the structures that can be found in different situations and they strategically place them in the different teaching/learning units.
When talking about the objectives and the syllabus that are going to be implemented in a course, CBLT focuses on competencies. It provides teachers with the necessary tools and parameters to design their syllabuses and its objectives and enhances students to learn the language and to know how and when to use it in a determined moment of their lives. It is also important to mention that Teachers play an essential role, since they are the ones who are going to provide students with the appropriate activities and learning materials which are related to their real lives, so that students can be communicatively competent in real situations. To achieve this, teachers must be excellent observers of the context that surround students and take into account the main needs they have to design matched syllabuses.
On the other hand, the competency approach has many advantages for learners. Firstly, competencies are precise and useful. It means that they are well defined and that they can be related to what students need and to what is appealing to them.
Secondly, they can be constructively criticized by students, since they can judge whether they are pertinent and helpful in their learning process. As a third point, competencies need to be socialized with students, so that they can specifically know what they need to learn and what is going to be tested in the course. In this way, students are going to be aware of their learning process and the goals they need to achieve. Finally, they can be gradually develop in different stages of the process, so that pupils discern what they have learned and what they still need to learn to achieve the set of competencies of the course.
To sum up, it can be said that CBLT is an educational movement that has been introduced in several places of the world, since people need to face the demands of it. It provides learners with the essential tools to interact successfully in society, enhancing them to use their knowledge to solve different real life situations. Furthermore, CBLT involves teachers’ great knowledge of student´s context, interests and needs and the development of different standards that enrich and lead the teaching-learning process, so that learners know exactly what they need to learn to be communicatively competent.


NAME: _____________________________________________
DATE: _____________________________________________
Objective: To identify vocabulary from the context
Instruction: Read the following text.

Romans built the city of Pompeii on the slope of a mountain called Vesuvius, in Italy. It was a dormant volcano and no one thought it could erupt. The soil was good, so the Romans grew crops and built houses and farms. But Vesuvius was not the peaceful volcano that everyone imagined.
Inside, solid rock was blocking its central vent. On August 24, 79 A. D,. While everyone was living placidly, the volcano suddenly erupted, stopping instantly all the life in Pompeii. While the hot rocks were raining down, everyone in Pompeii was running towards the sea; they were trying to run away. This is one of the most unforgettable disasters in all the history.

1-Instruction: Identify the meaning of the following words from the context. They are underlined in the reading.




E-Run away
b- think
c- Escape

2- Instruction: Match the word to the most appropriate definition.
a-Italy ----- Substance or object that is hard
b-Mountain ----- Area of land used for growing crops
c-Erupt ------ capital of Rome
d-Solid ------ A very high hill
e-Farm ------ To explode and throw out fire
3- Instruction: Choose three words from the text which are familiar to you and write their definition in English.
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