Educational Science

Part I: Academic MOOCs and the Question of Competence

As the date of paper submission for the LTEC 2015 comes closer with a threatening speed, I will concentrate on the parts of my M.A. Thesis that will be interesting aspects for the paper. I therefore choose to work on the aspects and relationship of competences, higher education, global online courses (general and with focus on MOOCs) this week.

I’d like to share and put to discussion two models (still in the stage of a draft!!!) – the first on the relationship and inter-dependencies between Learning, Knowledge and Competence and a second – more holistic one – on individual and social-cultural, experienced and sensed factors and dimensions of learning, knowledge and competence.

Here is the first one with an excerpt of the chapters text: I appreciate ideas and feedback – as always 🙂


Knowledge is expressed in codes. Language is such a code and terminology therefore includes respectively is a symbol for experiences. To be conscious about this means to be conscious that the same terminology or the translation of terms can have a totally different meaning for others than for oneself. But it also means, one has first of all to be conscious about hidden or underlying assumptions of one’s own language and to recognize that the choice of words may affect the way others respond to communication. The only way to a knowledge-based learning that does not aim to recite given content but to generate knowledge, and to make sure to start learning in a learning group or learning community, without risking affecting one another in an unintended and hindering way, is through meta-communication. Chapter 3.4.2 and 5.5.4 will pick up and engross these thoughts.


Even if there are various and different competence models or competence profiles, they are usually describe a set of skills, and knowledge, and abilities one is capable to use in different contexts and situations, are visible as performance, and are results of a learning process. So “learning” leads to generating knowledge and to gaining competence which in turn results in confident acting in various contexts.

The terms “Learning, Knowledge and Competence” therefore are inseparably related but to use them as synonyms or in a way that does not reflect on relations and interconnections hinders to foster and come up to a new learning culture.

Terminology for a new Learning culture

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