Language in Diversity


          In the framework of preparing the graduated students, we are entering a globalization era that is full of challenges and uncertainties, it is required an education which is designed based on a real field-necessity. The government makes a program of Competency Based Curriculum as a reference and a guidance for education to develop the domains of education (knowledge, skill, and attitude) in a whole level of education.

          The objective of this explanation is to know what is Competency Based Curriculum or CBC?, what are its characteristics?, what are the principle of CBC Development?, what are the procedures/steps in developing CBC?, and the last is why CBC?



1. The Definition

          Competency is a combination between knowledge, skill, value and attitude, which reflected in the thinking habit and the action. McAshan (1981: 45) defined that competency is a knowledge, skills and abilities or capabilities that a person achieves, which become part of his or her being to the exent he or she can satisfactorily perform particular cognitive, affective, and psychomotor behaviors.

        Gordon (1988: 109) also divided some aspects or domains contained in the concept of competency, as follows:

  1. Knowledge.
  2. Understanding.
  3. Skill.
  4. Value.
  5. Attitude.
  6. Interest.

According to the definitions above, it can be defined that Competency Based Curriculum as a concept of curriculum which is emphasized or supposed to broaden the ability of improving and enriching knowledge, understanding, skill, value, attitude and interest of the students so that they are capable of carrying out the assignment in learning process skillfully and responsibly.

2. The Characteristics of Competency Based Curriculum

          Depdiknas (2002) proposed that Competency Based Curriculum has its characteristics, they are:

  1. Emphasizing to the achievement of the students competent even individually or classically.
  2. Oriented to the learning outcomes and plurality.
  3. The delivery of learning using a varieted approaches and methods.
  4. Teachers are not only as the learning source, but also as the other sources which qualified educative substance.
  5. Assessment in emphasizing the process and the learning outcomes in order to mastery or achievement a competency.

Furthermore, it can be identified from many sources at least six characteristics of Competency Based Curriculum, they are:

(1) learning system with modul;

(2) using the whole of learning sources;

(3) field experience;

(4) individual personal strategy;

(5) an easiness to study; and

(6) a total learning.

3. The Principles of Competency Based Curriculum


          As a matter of the condition of our country, people needs, every development and a current changing nowadays, it is necessary to take an attention and to consider the principles in developing Competency Based Curriculum, as follows:

(1) Worship, Value, and Budi Pekerti Luhur;

(2) Reinforcement of National Integrity;

(3) The Balance of Ethics, Logics, Estetics, and Kinestetics;

(4) Having a Mutual Chances;

(5) The Age of Knowledge and Informal Technology;

(6) The Development of Skill for life;

(7) Studying for life;

(8) Concentrated to Kids with a Continuous Evaluation and


(9) A Whole Approach and Co-worker.

According to another sources, the principles underlying Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) are relevant with CBA. They are:

(1) Learners learn a language through using it to communicate;

(2) Authentic and meaningful communication should be the goal of

     classroom activities;

(3) Fluency is an important dimension of communication;

(4) Communication involves the integration of different language


(5) Learning is a process of creative construction and involves trial

     and error.

4. The Procedures or Steps in Developing Competency Based 


          In developing Competency Based Curriculum as in Curriculum Development in general, it consists of some steps, they are:

(1)  The Development of National Level Curriculum

(2)  The Development of Institution Level Curriculum

(3)  The Development of Subject Matter Level Curriculum

(4)  The Development of Modul Level Curriculum

Prior to implementing competency-based objectives, a particular procedure should be followed. First of all, the term competence should be clearly defined according to the related literature (Nunan 1990; Richards 2001). Next, competencies should be identified form the real-world tasks the students will do beyond the classroom. In other words, the real-world tasks should be analyzed into components or units of functional competencies. Then as competencies are unobservable, competencies should be specified in terms of performance or behavior.

5. The Reason Why Competency Based Curriculum

          The Development of Competency Based Curriculum has some special qualities or plus value better than other models.

          Firstly, this approach is contextual, because it is focused on the learners truth to develop many competencies based on their own potencies. In this case, learners are the learning subject, and the learning process takes place naturally in the working form and experiences based on certain competence standard, not a transfer of knowledge.

          Secondly, the Competency Based Curriculum might serve as a basis of the other skills development. The mastery of knowledge, and certain skill in one duty, the ability to overcome daily life problem, and so on.

          Thirdly, there are certain learning subjects in which the development is more accurate by using competency approach, especially which is relates on skills.


          We can conclude that Competency Based Curriculum is emphasized or supposed to broaden the ability of improving and enriching knowledge, understanding, skill, value, attitude and interest of the students so that they are capable of carrying out the assignment in learning process skillfully and responsibly.

          The Competency Based Curriculum also has some characteristics, principles and the procedures to reach and to achieve the better learning process.


Krahnke, Karl. 1987. Approaches to Syllabus Design for Foreign

Language Teaching. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall Inc.

Mulyasa, Dr. E. Mulyasa, M.Pd. 2002. Kurikulum Berbasis

Kompetensi: Konsep Karakteristik, dan Implementasi.

Bandung: PT Remaja Rosdakarya.

Nunan, David. 2001. Performance Based Approaches to the Design

of ESL Instruction. (Internet on Competence based Language


_____________. 1990. The Learner-Centered Curriculum: A study in

Language Teaching. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


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