Competency-Based Language Teaching: Personalized learning and Interaction in Speaking Skills Instruction at Grade 4

Gebisa Ayana Derseh, Sherif Ali Ahmed, Rufael Disasa Warabu


The study aimed to investigate the implementation of personalized learning and monitoring the progress of students' speaking skills in Competency-Based Language Teaching. Additionally, the study aimed to evaluate the level of interaction created in the class to develop speaking skills in the context of Competency-Based Language Teaching. The study used a mixed-methods approach and a descriptive survey design. A random sample of 97 English teachers was selected to fill out a questionnaire, and six schools were chosen for classroom observation and teacher interviews. The study used various methods to collect data, including a questionnaire, observation, and interview and employed both quantitative and qualitative data analysis methods. The results indicated that there was inadequate implementation of the two components of Competency-Based Education, namely personalized learning to monitoring students’ progress in speaking skills. The finding also showed that there was insufficient interaction intended for the mastery of speaking skills competencies. The study recommends that teachers implement Competency-Based Language Teaching components such as personalized learning and monitoring the progress of students learning practically in spoken language instruction. Additionally, there should be adequate interaction in the class to meet the required competencies in speaking skills.


Competency-Based Language Teaching; Interaction; Personalization Learning; Monitoring Progress; Speaking Skills

Full Text:



Aurora Institute. (2023, March 13). Competency-Based Education-Aurora Institute. education/.

Basham, J. D., Hall, T. E., Richard A. Carter Jr., R. A., Stahl, W. M. (2016). An Operationalized Understanding of Personalized Learning. Journal of Special Education Technology, 31(3), 126-136. DOI: 10.1177/0162643416660835.

Bohari, L. (2020). Improving speaking skills through small group discussion at eleventh grade students of SMA Plus Munirul Arifin NW Praya. JOLLT Journal of Languages and Language Teaching, 7(1), 68-81. DOI:

Boukhentache, S. (2020). Teaching Language Skills in Competency-Based Approach: Practical Guidelines. Altralang Journal, 02(02), 103-117.

Brown. H. D. (2004). Language assessment: Principles and classroom practices. White Plains, NY: Pearson Education.

Chen, X., Zou, D., Xie. H. & Cheng. G. (2021). Twenty Years of Personalized Language Learning: Topic Modeling and Knowledge Mapping. Educational Technology & Society, 24 (1), 205-222.

Creswell J.W., (2012). Educational Research: Planning, Conducting, and Evaluating Quantitative and Qualitative Research. 4th Edition. Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc.

Egbert & Shahrokni, (2019). Balancing old and new: Integrating competency-based learning into CALL teacher Education. The jalt call Journal, 15(1), 3–18.

Eskildsen & Majlesi, (2018). Learnables and Teachables in Second Language Talk: Advancing a Social Reconceptualization of Central SLA Tenets. Introduction to the Special Issue. The Modern Language Journal, 102, 1-10. DOI: 10.1111/modl.12462.

Eskildsen, S.W. & Majlesi, A.R. (2018); The Modern Language Journal, 102, 3-10. DOI: 10.1111/modl.12462 0026-7902/18/3–10 $1.50/0.

Griffith, W.I. and Lim, H.-Y. (2014). Introduction to Competency-Based Language Teaching. MEXROL Journal, 38(2), 1-9.

Hall, G, (2011). Exploring English Language teaching: Language in action. New York, NY: Routledge.

Janet S. Twyman, J. S. (2014). Competency-based Education: Supporting Personalized Learning, Center on Innovations in Learning, Retrieved 23/03/24.

Karuppiah, N. (2021). Enhancing the quality of teacher-child interactions in Singapore pre-school classrooms. Journal of Childhood, Education & Society, 2(1), 58-68. DOI: 10.37291/2717638X.20212187.

Kent, M. L. & Taylor (2021). Fostering dialogic engagement: Toward architecture of social media for social change. Social Media + Society, 1–10.

Langeloo, A. Lara, M. M., Deunk. M. I., Klitzing, N.F. & Jan-Willem Strijbos, J-W. (2019). A systematic review of teacher–child interactions with multilingual young children. Review of Educational Research, 89 (4), 536–568. DOI: 10.3102/0034654319855619.

Levine, E. & Patrick, S. (2019). What is competency-based education? An updated definition. Vienna, VA: Aurora Institute.

Ling Zhang, L. & James D. Basham, J. D. (2017). Personalized learning: Does it align with UDL? U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Technology. Future ready learning: reimagining the role of technology in education. Retrieved February 8, 2024, from

Lingga, L. M., Simanjuntak, R. M. & Sembiring, Y. (2020). Students’ strategies in learning speaking skills at SMP Nasrani 3 Medanjollt. Journal of Languages and Language Teaching, 8(1), 91-99. DOI:

Marion, S. Worthen, M. & Evans, C. (2020). How Systems of Assessments Aligned with Competency-Based Education Can Support Equity. Vienna, VA and Dover, NH: Aurora Institute and Center for Assessment.

Mellak, F. & Menad, C. (2015). Developing the Speaking Skill through Classroom Interaction: The Case of Third Year Students at UMMTO. MA thesis, Unpublished. University of Tizi-Ouzou.

‘Morel, E.N. Griffiths, B. (2018). Redefining Competency-Based Education: Competence for life. Business Expert Press.

Moumoutjis, S. (2021). Why should schools transition to competency-based education? Aurora Institute.

Nunan, D. (2015). Teaching English to speakers of other languages: An Introduction. New York: Routledge.

Patrick, S. & Sturgis, C. (2013). Necessary for Success: Building Mastery of World-Class Skills. A CompetencyWorks Issue Brief, International Association for K-12 Online Learning.

Patrick, S., Worthen, M., Frost, D., & Truong, N., (2018). Current to Future State: Issues and Action Steps for State Policy to Support Personalized, Competency-Based Learning. iNACOL.

Richards, J.C. & T.S. Rodgers. (2014). Approaches and methods in language teaching (3rd Ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Ross-Fisher, R. (2017). Implications for education preparation programs considering competency-based education. Competency-Based Education, 2(2), 1–3. https://doi. org/10.1002/cbe2.1044.

Saunders M, Lewis P, Thornhill A 2016. Research Methods for Business Students. 7th Edition. England: Pearson Education Limited.

Sibomana, E. and Dushimumuremyi, D. (2018). Competence-Based English Language Teaching in Rwanda: Opportunities, challenges and possible solutions. Journal of Language, Technology & Entrepreneurship in Africa, (9):2. 1-15.

Sivaslian, L. (2016). Two heads are better than one: A curricular innovation through peer feedback in a low-proficiency ESL Writing Class. The CATESOL Journal, 28 (1), 1-38

Sornson, B. (2023). Over-Tested and Under-Prepared: Shifting from One-Size-Fits-All Instruction to Personalized Competency Based Learning. Second Edition. New York: Routledge.

Steele, J. L., Lewis, M. W., Sant Ibanez, L., Faxon-Mills, S., Rudnick, M., Stecher, B. M., & Hamilton, L. S. (2014). Competency-based education in three pilot programs: Examining implementation and outcomes. RAND Corporation. Santa Monica.

Steiner, E. D., Hamilton, L. S., Stelitano, L., & Rudnick, M. (2017). Designing innovative high schools: Implementation of the opportunity by design initiative after two years. RAND Corporation. Santa Monica.

Sturgis, C. (2017). Reaching the tipping point: insights on advancing competency education in New England. Competency Works Report. INACOL.

Sturgis, C., & Casey, K. (2018). Designing for equity: Leveraging competency-based education to ensure all students succeed. Vienna, VA: Aurora Institute. Retrieved from https://www.inacol.Org/resource/designing-equity-leveraging-competency-based education-ensure-students-succeed/.

Sutherland, D. Strunk, K. Nagel, J. & Kilbride, T. (2022). Boxed in: Structural limitations to flexible pacing in Michigan competency based education pilot districts. Journal of Educational Change, 24, 837–869.

Tetzlaff, L., Schmiedek, F. & Brod, G. (2020). Developing Personalized Education: A Dynamic Framework. Educational Psychology Review 33, 863–882.

Thornbury, S. (2006). How to teach speaking. England: Longman.

Twyman, J. S. (2014). Competency-based Education: Supporting Personalized Learning. Philadelphia, PA: Center on Innovations in Learning, Temple University.

Vail, T. (2019). Self‐paced English as a Foreign Language in a Competency Based Education program for Korean learners. The Journal of Competency-Based Education, 1-10. DOI: 10.1002/cbe2.1195.

Wang, C. (2021). Intercultural competency as an essential component of professional competency modeling. The European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences.

Warda, S. (2015). The Importance of Classroom Interaction in Improving EFL Student’s Speaking Skill.Mohamed Khider University of Biskra.

Zhang, L. Basham, J. D. Yang, S. (2020). Understanding the implementation of personalized learning: A research synthesis. Educational Research Review, 31,



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2024 International Journal of Multicultural and Multireligious Understanding

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

International Journal of Multicultural and Multireligious Understanding (IJMMU) ISSN 2364-5369
Copyright © 2014-2018 IJMMU. All rights reserved.