W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-talent-signal@w3.org > August 2019

Re: Domain sketch

From: Phil Barker <phil.barker@pjjk.co.uk>
Date: Tue, 20 Aug 2019 15:58:03 +0100
To: public-talent-signal@w3.org
Message-ID: <8fb71457-0894-3952-83af-d31ac7400abe@pjjk.co.uk>
Simon and I think in very similar ways on this issue (we also work 

At the base of my concern is reconciling the view of a competency as 
something that I teach, that someone learns with the view of it as 
something that can be awarded.

I think what is happening is that the same label is being used for 
different things, in much the same way as we see phrases like "Bachelor 
of Science in Physics" being used to mean both the degree credential and 
the educational credential awarded at the end of it. A Credential is not 
a LearningOpportunity / EducationalProgramme, but they may share the 
same name.

So can we try to build on some definitions?

For me (and Simon, as below):

a /Competency/ is the ability to do something, to posses a skill or 
knowledge (etc.). It has to be demonstrable to be of any interest to the 
outside world, but it is fundamentally a property of an agent (person, 
organization or machine--mostly we're interested in people here, I 
think). This is what I teach or what I learn.

/C//ompetency definitions/ can be published in frameworks, which gives 
us a representation of competency that we can use when resolving/looking 
up the identifier for a competency. So competencies are an intangible 
thing that a person may learn, but the competency frameworks are 
creative works with authors, publishers etc.

a /Credential/ is recognition of one or more competencies, however large 
or small, formal or informal. Degree to NanoBadge (choose your own non 
trademark term for the lower end).

I think this accords with what Alex says in:

> What I believe both Merrilea and myself are asserting is the example 
> you gave IS a credential/achievement assertion  just of a smaller 
> scope and different type. 


On 20/08/2019 15:38, Simon Grant wrote:
> It's very understandable that people elide certain words if there is 
> no confusion in their home context. In this case, though, I think it 
> would be really helpful to distinguish three things which could 
> loosely be called "competency", and which I think different people are 
> referring to at different times.
> 1. A natural "competency": a property of an agent, as in the question 
> "do you have this competency" meaning "are you competent" rather than 
> "are you qualified/certificated"
> 2. A "competency definition" (or "competency description"): a form of 
> words describing a competency without reference to the person that may 
> or may not have it.
> 3. A "certificate of competency" or "competency certificate": 
> something like a credential (I have no opinion about whether it is a 
> credential or not) that means that some organisation attests that a 
> person has a competency.
> You could also have an abstract "competency certificate description" 
> but I think that is less helpful.
> To my reading, Alex so far has been closest to keeping these 
> distinctions clear.
> Does that help?
> Simon
> On Tue, 20 Aug 2019 at 14:54, Alex Jackl <alex@bardicsystems.com 
> <mailto:alex@bardicsystems.com>> wrote:
>     Jason,
>     You point to an interesting thing.   I think I understand exactly
>     what you are saying.   You are saying:
>     "a university may publish that a particular person has achieved
>     these ten competencies but did not get an Associate's degree."
>     I would *strongly assert (I am not saying this is true but I htink
>     it should be) *that a super formal credential like an associate's
>     degree IS not structurally different than a "university publishing
>     the achievement of having mastered these ten competencies" .  It
>     is not a difference in TYPE, it is a difference in scale and
>     formality.
>     A Credential could be a badge that I issued through Credly that
>     you attended four hours of /Alex Jackl's Amazing Data Emporium/,
>     or it could be a PhD in Information System Design from MIT.
>     Both are credentials - and what makes it a credential/achievement
>     assertion rather than a competency is the assertion from an
>     organization that XYZ knowledge, skill, aptitude or experience has
>     been validated in some way.
>     A competency/achievement description is the description of the XYZ
>     knowledge, skill, aptitude or experience that is being assesses or
>     asserted.
>     I believe this level of simplicity and clarity in language will
>     serve us well as we try to align all these standards and  methods
>     of describing these issues
> -- 
> from Simon Grant +44 7710031657 (I'm "asimong" with many services)

Phil Barker <http://people.pjjk.net/phil>. http://people.pjjk.net/phil
CETIS LLP <https://www.cetis.org.uk>: a cooperative consultancy for 
innovation in education technology.
PJJK Limited <https://www.pjjk.co.uk>: technology to enhance learning; 
information systems for education.

CETIS is a co-operative limited liability partnership, registered in 
England number OC399090
PJJK Limited is registered in Scotland as a private limited company, 
number SC569282.
Received on Tuesday, 20 August 2019 14:58:27 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Friday, 17 January 2020 17:33:36 UTC