Proficiency-based learning or Proficiency Based education refers to systems of instruction, assessment, grading, and academic reporting that are based on students demonstrating that they have learned the knowledge and skills they are expected to learn as they progress through their education.
Proficiency-based learning is generally seen as a change from traditional educational approaches in which students may or may not acquire proficiency in a given course or academic subject before they earn course credit, get promoted to the next grade level, or graduate.
Example: High school students typically earn academic credit by passing a course, but a passing grade may be an A or it may be a D. With grades ranging from A-D, this suggests that some students learned more than others. While the goal of proficiency-based learning is to ensure that more students learn what they are expected to learn, the approach can also provide educators with more detailed or fine-grained information about student learning progress, which can help them more precisely identify academic strengths and weakness, as well as the specific concepts and skills students have not yet mastered.
Since academic progress is often tracked and reported by learning standard in proficiency-based courses and schools, educators and parents often know more precisely what specific knowledge and skills students have acquired or may be struggling with. For example, instead of receiving a letter grade on an assignment or test, each of which may address a variety of standards, students are graded on specific learning standards, each of which describes the knowledge and skills students are expected to acquire.
Since 1997, Maine has had the Maine Learning Results as its State standards for eight content areas and periodically updates them to ensure they are aligned with the evolving expectations of colleges and careers in the 21st century.
The Maine Learning Results were updated in 2011 to include Common Core as the college and career readiness standards for English (http://www.corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy/language arts) and math (http://www.corestandards.org/Math/), preparing our students for success in college, career and civic life by creating deeper, more rigorous and clearer expectations for learning.
The Common Core State Standards are written to be rigorous, to prepare students for college readiness and to compete in a global economy. The CCSS reflect the knowledge and skills that young people need to succeed in college and their future career. Within each content area, the standards focus on problem solving and critical thinking skills and will assist Spruce Mountain School District in its mission: To ensure success through personalized learning.