A Postcolonial Approach to Competency-based Curriculum Design for Higher Education Administration Graduate Programs


By developing and testing a model of CBE that both seeks to respond to criticisms of CBE and tests a model of competency-based curriculum design that promotes equity, diversity, and inclusion, the proposed project seeks to 1) Advance knowledge about CBE specifically expanding knowledge on the current state of CBE; 2) Expand knowledge about how to promote equity through CBE; and, 3) Demonstrate how to make CBE part of an ongoing curriculum design and evaluation process.

Key research questions include:

  • Is a postcolonial approach to Competency-based curriculum design an effective method for identifying competencies and developing a competency-based curriculum?
  • Does a postcolonial approach to competency-based curriculum design mitigate concerns about CBE, namely that CBE only reflects the dominant form of knowledge, that CBE is outcome-based to the exclusion of process, and that CBE is solely career-focused.
  • Does this postcolonial approach to competency-based design promote greater equity and diversity in higher education curriculum?


Data will be collected through interviews with higher education students and practitioners, as well as community leaders from various indigenous communities around the US. The redesign will also be grounded in Stein’s stages of inclusion of marginalized knowledges (2017).



Laura Parson, Auburn University
Jaime Miller, Auburn University