chapter  8
19 Pages

The appropriation of constructivism by instrumentalism: the case of competency-based training

Competency-based training models of curriculum are now the basis of vocational education and training (VET) qualifications in many countries because governments believe that they meet the needs of industry and ensure industry ‘control’ over VET. Many countries have, or are in the process of introducing, competency-based training (CBT) qualifications in their VET systems as part of constructing national qualifications frameworks (Tuck 2007). National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs) in England, Wales and Northern Ireland are based on CBT models of curriculum, as are Scottish Vocational Qualifications (Misko 2006). CBT is also a feature of many vocational qualifications in South Africa (Allais 2007b) and New Zealand (Melles 2008). Australia is of particular interest because it has gone further than most other countries in insisting that all and not just some of its publicly funded qualifications in VET be based on CBT. Australian VET qualifications are derived from ‘training packages’, which are the equivalents of British NVQs. Guthrie (2009: 6) explains that the Australian model of CBT in VET was strongly based on the UK NVQ model and drew heavily on the UK experience and literature so there are many parallels between the two countries.