Building Relevant and High Quality Competency-Based Programs

Friday, May 15, 2020
9:00 am – 4:00 pm
Hawai’i Pacific University, Honolulu, HI


In the interests of our campuses and wider community WSCUC has decided to cancel our May workshops in Hawai’i.


Click here for a draft of the program schedule.


This workshop is designed for those seeking to build a relevant and quality competency-based (CBE) program.  The focus will be on innovating curriculum process: the steps involved in program creation and revision, the key role of backwards design, and how research informs decision-making and structure, program outcomes, and assessment. Key takeaways will include an outline of the phases in developing CBE programs and strategies for overcoming challenges. In addition, participants will be provided guidelines for determining an engaging educational journey with targeted learning activities and formative assessment.

Workshop Learning Outcomes

In this workshop, participants will:

  • Gain knowledge of CBE models and components, as well as faculty, business, and regulatory models
  • Utilize a research approach to ensure program relevance and quality
  • Outline and practice Backward Design for program creation and revision
  • Effectively create clearly articulated and aligned performance based assessments
  • Explore learning activities and learner styles to maximize student success

Intended Audience

This workshop is intended for those with some experience in program and curriculum development, including faculty, instructional designers, program chairs, and deans. No previous knowledge of Competency-Based Education (CBE) is required.

Workshop Facilitators

Laurie Dodge

Dr. Laurie Dodge, Vice Chancellor Institutional Assessment & Planning and Vice Provost at Brandman University, served as a key leader in the building of Brandman’s undergraduate and graduate direct assessment competency-based education programs. Dr. Dodge has served in numerous capacities at Brandman University including department chair, interim dean, director of assessment, interim co-vice chancellor of academic affairs, and professor. Dr. Dodge is the WASC Senior University and College Commission (WSCUC) Accreditation Liaison Officer for Brandman University and serves on the WSCUC Substantive Change Committee. At the national level, Dr. Dodge has participated in CBE related projects, Comprehensive Learner Record, QA Commons Essential Employability Qualities Certification, and Credential Engine (Higher Education Advisory Group). Dr. Dodge has presented nationally and internationally on CBE and other areas of expertise include assessment, curriculum development, accreditation, and academic policy. She has served on numerous regional accreditation review teams for universities seeking re-accreditation, initial accreditation, structural and substantive change, and international universities. Dr. Laurie Dodge is a national leader in competency-based education and is the inaugural and Past President of the Board of Directors for the Competency-Based Education Network (C-BEN). In 2016, Laurie was named one of the “The Sixteen Most Innovative People in Higher Education” by Washington Monthly. In 2018, Dr. Dodge co-authored a book titled “A Leader’s Guide to Competency-Based Education:  From Inception to Implementation” (Bushway, Dodge, & Long, 2018).

Lori Williams

Dr. Lori Williams, President and CEO, National Council for State Authriozation Reciprocity Agreements, has over 25 years experience in education. Most recently, she served as Vice President at WASC Senior College and University Commission. Dr. Williams served as provost and ALO at Ashford University in San Diego. Previous positions include vice provost of curriculum development and innovation at Kaplan University, vice president of product strategy and development at Laureate Education, executive director of the center for student success at Walden University, and administrative roles at Saint Michael’s College and Middlebury College. Throughout her career, Lori has also taught extensively, serving as a professor, thesis advisor, and mentor. Lori enjoys spending time outdoors hiking with her husband and dog, as well as gardening, yoga, and movies. Lori holds a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Education Leadership from Union Institute & University, an M.A. in Applied Linguistics and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Saint Michael’s College, and a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University.

Hotel Reservations: We encourage participants to make their hotel reservations as soon as possible. Given the workshop is being held on a campus, WSCUC has not contracted nor secured a group rate with any particular hotel. There are many websites online that help with finding reasonably priced hotels.

Registration fee includes lunch. Beverages and snacks will be available during breaks. Attendees will be on their own for all other meals.

Registration fees: $350/per team member until 4/30/20.  After the registration deadline, if space is available, the late registration fee will be $395/per team member.

Discount for Combined Registration: The The Diverse Campus: Improving Access, Equity, and the Student Experience workshop will be offered on May 14, 2020 at Hawai’i Pacific University. The special rate for a combined registration for The Diverse Campus and Building Relevant and High Quality Competency-Based Programs workshops is $595 until the registration deadline on 4/30/2020. After the registration deadline, if space is available, the late registration fee will be $695/per team member.


This educational program has been developed by national and regional experts and is offered as a service to WSCUC member institutions and others who wish to learn about good practices applicable to all institutions. It is entirely optional, and our hope is that member institutions will find it helpful. WSCUC staff will be present to answer questions related specifically to accreditation expectations.

Event Details

Date: May 15, 2020 - 9:00am - 4:00pm

Fee: Free