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Applying Cognitive Rigor to CBE or Project-Based Learning

Resorces listed below are excerpts from Deeper Competency-Based Learning (Corwin 2020), Rigor by Design, Not Chance (ASCD 2023), or Elevating Competency-Based Learning in a PLC at Work (Solution Tree Press, 2025)

  1. S-T-A-R-S - Use this tool to develop prompts for performance -based assessments with opportunities for student input.

  2. Rubric Development - Hess PLC Tool #11 - Use to collaboratively design or give feedback on rubrics.

  3. Performance Task Validation - Hess PLC Tool #9A - Use to analyze and validate a project design or performance task.

  4. KID TOOL: Collaborative Inquiry Planning Students use to analyze and plan how they will complete a complex task.

  5. KID TOOL: PBL Activity Log - Use as an alternative to a teacher-established calendar; co-develop with students at first.

  6. KID TOOL: Monitoring Progress - Students monitor their own progress

  7. BEST Toolkit - Self-Direction Rubrics K-12 Students can use these rubrics to guide PBL goal setting and self-reflection activities.

  8. BEST Toolkit - Collaboration Rubrics K-12 Rubrics can be used by individuals or groups to show evidence of learning /progress.

Karin's Favorite PBL Resources, PBL Authors, and PBL Examples


Building Competency-Based Systems & CB Assessments

Excerpts from Deeper Competency-Based Learning: Making Equitable, Student-Centered, Sustainable Shifts (2020)

  1. Book Overview & Book Study: Webinar Session 1 and Handout

  2. Competency-Based Systems - Overview of Major CBE Shifts 

  3. Competency-Based Systems - Sample Holistic Proficiency Scale for school-based grading and reporting

  4. Competency-based Systems - CBE Tool #3: Self-Evaluation Rubric for Competency Statements

  5. Competency-Based Systems - CBE Tool#4: Developing Competencies Across Grades (NOTE: NH's Model Competencies used this tool during development)

  6. Competency-Based Systems - CBE Tool#5: Analyzing a Competency (ELA example with development steps. Then use "I can..." statements to create a performance scale for each competency.)

  7. Blank Template - CBE Tool #5 

  8. Competency-based Systems - CBE Tool #6: Performance Scale Example (Example for developing instruction and assessments for rhetorical analysis across content areas) 

  9.  Strategy Example: (Chapter 4 excerpt) Pacing strategies for personalizing on-line learning

  10.  Strategy Example: (Chapter 3 excerpt) Rhetorical Analysis Options across Content Areas

  11. NH Model Competencies - Math grades 9-12 (with "I can..." targets). NH K-8 Model Competencies in science, math, and ELA.

  12. Social Studies Themes (for competency development/use) - National Council for the Social Studies

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