Competency based education is a vision aimed at an integral approach, a combination of knowledge, skills and attitude. This vision well suits the method of working used in theatre education. Ideally the theatre student learns by discovering how to apply a combination of these three aspects to function capably in professional practice. Because the ATD views each (individual) student as a separate point of departure, your self-reliance, ability to learn and steer your own development are central to the education programme.
As student, the learning environment must stimulate you to reflect and should offer insight into how you can link practical experiences with theoretical knowledge and above all, what conclusions you can draw from this for your further development. This process ultimately determines if you are suitable for the vocation of actor, theatre maker, theatre teacher, dancer, choreograph or dance teacher.
The national networks (Theatre, Theatre in Education, Dance, Dance Teacher) categorize similar study programmes, drawing up so-called Study Programme Profiles in consultation with the work field that list all competencies that a student must possess at the end of his/her study. These competencies play an important role in the tests and assessments that monitor students’ development.
A student must master the stipulated competencies to meet exam requirements; this means that the student must be able to apply and develop independently what they have learned during their study. This does not mark a conclusion but rather the beginning of the rest of your life, during which we hope that you continue to develop and never stop learning.
These competencies and the accompanying exit qualifications are necessary to show what results have been achieved and validate to the outside world that a minimum standard is being upheld. However, within the study programmes themselves they are not a static given. With this we mean to say that students who have completed the study programme are not all identically qualified, nor do they have the same kind of artistic level. A view to future possibilities and whether you can hold your own in the work field and continue to grow and develop is ultimately the most important factor.