Knowledge Application? Confidence?

William Cornelius
October 13, 2021

In today’s fast paced world, we may not be looking at key areas of learning as they relate to knowledge application (applying what you just learned) and confidence in the application, decision making, or critical thinking of that knowledge. There may be much more to better understanding learning gaps if we look at learning differently. Maybe a new equation in measuring competency.

Competency is defined as “the capability to apply knowledge and skills to successfully perform critical work functions in a defined setting”, and it involves more than mere knowledge accumulation. Just because someone scores well on a knowledge assessment does not necessarily mean they will be able to effectively apply that knowledge.

If we are going to improve competency, offering the standard knowledge base training is helpful, however, what about confirming knowledge application (applying that knowledge in a simulated case or scenario)? Additionally, how confident are our team members in their current knowledge? More importantly, how confident are they in applying their knowledge in a simulated scenario? Just because someone scores high on a knowledge assessment does not necessarily mean they can apply that knowledge or that they are competent.

Competency requires knowledge application, i.e., critical thinking, decision-making, and action-taking that reinforce the subject matter a learner has studied; and this is what micro-simulations provide:  immersive scenarios requiring learners to apply their knowledge by making decisions and taking actions in simulated situations that they can expect to encounter in their work environments.

Additionally, the ability to quantify learners’ confidence in their decisions can be key to uncovering and correcting learning gaps.  Imagine the value in being able to identify and correct early on during the training process, learners who are overly confident in their abilities, but who demonstrate inadequate competency.  Quantifiable analysis of learners’ competence and confidence can help organizations quickly correct gaps in understanding and knowledge application, thus preventing real life mistakes that may result in safety, financial, and legal ramifications.  

By adding knowledge application and confidence to the competency equation, potential learning gaps can be readily identified. By quickly identifying these gaps in learning, significant time and resources can be saved while ensuring our teams attain competency. Join us in this journey.

Bill Cornelius, President & CEO

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