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RE: [Talent-Signal] relating competencies to job postings

From: Nadeau, Gregory <gnadeau@pcgus.com>
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 2019 16:50:52 +0000
To: Fritz Ray <fritley@gmail.com>, "public-talent-signal@w3.org" <public-talent-signal@w3.org>
Message-ID: <BN6PR14MB16838CA103FE5BF1788EA4C1BAFA0@BN6PR14MB1683.namprd14.prod.outlook.com>
Hello All –

From my perspective, delineating distinctions between knowledge, skills, abilities is mostly an exercise in semantics and is not necessary for information modelling.  The more critical functional distinction is between:

  *   An achievement – something that more than one person could demonstrate (examples include: SKA, competency, credential, etc)
  *   An assertion – a specific instance by an issuer about a recipient (learner/worker) regarding the achievement

Other terms could be used.  This distinction aligns with the IMS Global Open Badge and new draft candidate Comprehensive Learner Record specification.

g.



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From: Fritz Ray <fritley@gmail.com>
Sent: Wednesday, July 3, 2019 9:37 PM
To: public-talent-signal@w3.org
Subject: Re: [Talent-Signal] relating competencies to job postings

I have decided to re-open the can of worms, because it is a holiday weekend, and discussion is what the holidays are about.

There are a constellation of objects and relationships that, I believe, represent some clarity when it comes to relating a number of these things. Let me know if I am making some fundamental error here.

Definitions: First, there is task itself. This represents a repeatable thing that can be done by an individual. A competence/competency represents the capability of an individual to perform a task. Demonstrating a task implies competence and the ability to employ KSAs.

KSAs are not directly demonstrable, because skills, knowledge, and abilities -- in their latent form -- are not expressible. They can only be demonstrated when performing a model task or representative task -- then ipso facto one is demonstrating competence or a competency, because one is employing a combination of KSAs to perform a task.

----- Examples -----

So, to call something a skill or knowledge or ability is to speak about latent notions -- The knowledge of Pi to 25 places is latent. Reciting Pi to 25 places is a task. A person's capability to recite Pi to 25 places is a competency, because it necessarily employs a combination of KSAs -- breathing, memory, sequencing, the numbers, the number system, speech, etc to perform a task, reciting Pi to 25 places, in a context that requires those KSAs -- A classroom, a bus, a job interview.

The skill of sharpening a pencil is latent, bottled up in the human (or machine, but never mind that) brain and spine and whatever other parts. Sharpening a pencil is a task. The competence to sharpen a pencil employs all manner of other KSAs that perform the task and create an outcome.

The ability to stand is only provable through the act or task of standing.... Repeat explanation...

Therefore, I think the labels skills is fine. I believe skills are separate from knowledge or natural abilities or acquired abilities, so there may be something there -- but putting a competency in the place of a skill is not wrong per se. One (a skill) identifies a context free and task free latent capability that may or may not be deployable in other contexts, the other (a competency) is more explicit and grounded in task and context.

---- Continued nannerings -----
Likewise, a Learning Objective is only expressible through a competency because an individual's having learned all they can learn (whether that involves performing the objective task or not) has a competence gap between what they learned or did in the learning environment and what they will do in the target environment. The KSAs employed demonstrating that competency in the "field" as it were are probably different from the classroom and lab environments. These contextual gaps don't exist when we talk about the knowledge it takes to remember how to spell quixotic, but the context matters suddenly when done on a stage with a bright light at a spelling bee.

On Wed, Jul 3, 2019 at 4:24 AM Phil Barker <phil.barker@pjjk.co.uk<mailto:phil.barker@pjjk.co.uk>> wrote:

Hello all,

I know that many of you are about start a holiday; and after that I will be on vacation. So this may not be the best time to start a conversation, but I want to post this now to see what I come back to...

One of the issues we have listed is how to refer skills requirements to competency definitions in a standard framework.

I have drafted on the wiki a straw man for a simple way of doing this<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.w3.org%2Fcommunity%2Ftalent-signal%2Fwiki%2FExample_of_how_to_refer_skills_requirements_to_competency_definitions&data=01%7C01%7CGNADEAU%40PCGUS.COM%7C4cc0f23be87c4eb1088008d700202f49%7Cd9b110c34c254379b97ae248938cc17b%7C0&sdata=fJJKvoSDgelDu0%2FGO%2BIjPAbZEHbLF1yQetBdldSs6MQ%3D&reserved=0> [1] with minimal change to what currently exists in schema.org<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fschema.org&data=01%7C01%7CGNADEAU%40PCGUS.COM%7C4cc0f23be87c4eb1088008d700202f49%7Cd9b110c34c254379b97ae248938cc17b%7C0&sdata=19XCZTOxfCuDvTAXObHqsszSBTy54XRKOkHoDvRVs9o%3D&reserved=0>. It requires only that the expected type for one property be changed.

{

  "@context": "http://schema.org/"<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fschema.org%2F&data=01%7C01%7CGNADEAU%40PCGUS.COM%7C4cc0f23be87c4eb1088008d700202f49%7Cd9b110c34c254379b97ae248938cc17b%7C0&sdata=hGZM%2B3yAKn4GivtFaXhiG9nZ5Wdz%2Fb%2BNqVvbTC%2FTWYs%3D&reserved=0>,

  "@type": "JobPosting",

  "title": "Junior software developer",

  "skills": {

    "@type": "Definedterm",

    "termCode": "K0016",

    "description": "Knowledge of computer programming principles",

    "inDefinedTermSet": {

      "@type": "DefinedTermSet",

      "name": "National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) Cybersecurity Workforce Framework",

      "url": "https://doi.org/10.6028/NIST.SP.800-181"<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fdoi.org%2F10.6028%2FNIST.SP.800-181&data=01%7C01%7CGNADEAU%40PCGUS.COM%7C4cc0f23be87c4eb1088008d700202f49%7Cd9b110c34c254379b97ae248938cc17b%7C0&sdata=GSojtCwQ%2BoMlLRqzT0IGnlvfPadELhDBUu%2BVBPjH6oM%3D&reserved=0>,

      "publisher": {

        "@type": "Organization",

        "name": "National Institute of Standards and Technology"

      },

      "datePublished": "2017-08"

    }

  }

}

Points to note / consider

* this doesn't attempt to fully describe the competency, that's the job of the framework. Furthermore this approach is pretty much agnostic to the format used to represent the framework--I mean, it would be nice if a linked-data friendly format were used and we can then link properly to its @id but this example is a pdf.

* is there any other key information that is required to identify the competence being referred to?

* I've used the existing schema.org<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fschema.org&data=01%7C01%7CGNADEAU%40PCGUS.COM%7C4cc0f23be87c4eb1088008d700202f49%7Cd9b110c34c254379b97ae248938cc17b%7C0&sdata=19XCZTOxfCuDvTAXObHqsszSBTy54XRKOkHoDvRVs9o%3D&reserved=0> property skills to cover a competency that is defined as 'knowledge'. I know the KSA approach to competencies, but also that other aspects can be added (tools/technologies, attitudes) an other approaches taken. Can we live with lumping these together under the label skills, or do we have to look into creating a property with a different name? We will be somewhat constrained by existing schema.org<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fschema.org&data=01%7C01%7CGNADEAU%40PCGUS.COM%7C4cc0f23be87c4eb1088008d700202f49%7Cd9b110c34c254379b97ae248938cc17b%7C0&sdata=19XCZTOxfCuDvTAXObHqsszSBTy54XRKOkHoDvRVs9o%3D&reserved=0> usage. Also I think that trying to separate out the different aspects of competence would cause difficulties when implemented in the non-specialist schema.org<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fschema.org&data=01%7C01%7CGNADEAU%40PCGUS.COM%7C4cc0f23be87c4eb1088008d700202f49%7Cd9b110c34c254379b97ae248938cc17b%7C0&sdata=19XCZTOxfCuDvTAXObHqsszSBTy54XRKOkHoDvRVs9o%3D&reserved=0> context. Remember, the competence framework is where the information should be provided about what aspect of competence (knowledge, skill or ability) is being referred to.

Best wishes to all celebrating the 4 July.

Phil



1. https://www.w3.org/community/talent-signal/wiki/Example_of_how_to_refer_skills_requirements_to_competency_definitions<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.w3.org%2Fcommunity%2Ftalent-signal%2Fwiki%2FExample_of_how_to_refer_skills_requirements_to_competency_definitions&data=01%7C01%7CGNADEAU%40PCGUS.COM%7C4cc0f23be87c4eb1088008d700202f49%7Cd9b110c34c254379b97ae248938cc17b%7C0&sdata=fJJKvoSDgelDu0%2FGO%2BIjPAbZEHbLF1yQetBdldSs6MQ%3D&reserved=0>
--

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Received on Friday, 5 July 2019 07:17:07 UTC

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