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Outcome Based Education

OBE or Outcome Based Education

The word outcomes suggests a relationship with outcomes-based education also known as  and Common Core Education, a philosophy expounded primarily by Spady. Spady (1994) has made the point that outcomes-based education also known as and Common Core Education is not only about curriculum change. It is about changing the nature of how the education system works – the guiding vision, a set of principles and guidelines that frame the education and training activities that take place within a system. If one accepts that outcomes-based education also known as and Common Core Education is about systemic change, then there is likely to be a dimension that challenges current practices of curriculum development and delivery. However the point needs to be emphasised: outcomes-based education also known as and Common Core Education is primarily about systemic change and not curriculum change. The NQF then in its commitment to a system of education and training that is organised around the notion of learning outcomes, is about systemic change.

Also see: Assessors Course – based on Outcome Based Education

Spady also states that outcomes-based education also known as and Common Core Education is about a consistent, focussed, systematic, creative implementation of 4 principles:

  • A clarity of focus on the learning outcomesthat ultimately students need to demonstrate; Spady calls these complex role performance abilities and the corresponding South African conception could possibly be the critical cross-field education and training outcomes. Spady’s mapping of SAQA’s critical cross-field outcomes to his complex role performance abilities is attached as Appendix A.
  • The design-down / build-back approachto building the curriculum; the curriculum design starts with the abilities, skills, knowledge, attitudes that one ultimately wants students to demonstrate and ensures that the assessment is focussed on what the learner has achieved in relation to these learning outcomes rather than focussed on what was presented in the course of delivery.
  • High expectations; the expectation must be that learners are able to achieve these outcomes and therefore it is necessary for those who work in the system to behave and structure what they do in working with learners, in such a way that they are enabled to achieve these outcomes;
  • Expanded opportunity; there is a necessity to move beyond the rigid blocks we have created around education e.g. blocks of time and the traditional organisation of learning institutions. (Spady: 1999)

In the NSB regulations, outcomes are defined as the contextually demonstrated end products of the learning process. Hence in the NQF paradigm, the successful planning and delivery of a learning programme is only possible when the desired endpoint or endpoints are clear i.e. the desired learning outcomes. There are choices to be made within the learning programme design and development in respect of methodology, assessment, technological resources to be used etc. Within an outcomes-based system, these choices need to be governed by the extent to which a particular decision contributes ultimately to the achievement of the desired learning outcomes, be they specific or critical outcomes.

Also see: Assessors Course – based on Outcome Based Education

One could argue that any education and training system exists on a number of levels and it would be appropriate at this stage to distinguish three them.

  1. The principles governing the system organisation i.e. the value drivers in a system;
  2. The principles of pedagogy or the educational philosophy that drives learning programme design, delivery and assessment;
  3. Specific learning programme delivery or implementation – pedagogy in the classroom.

Some would argue that (2) should precede (1). In the South African context however, in 1994 the democratic government faced substantial problems in education and training at the systemic level. These problems were so deep-rooted and wide-spread in the system from schooling through to higher education and training that they impacted negatively on actual teaching practice and student learning. Hence in the South African scenario, the most pressing need for reform was at the systemic level. This is a pre-requisite for deeper engagement with pedagogy and teaching practices. Hence in order to address the fundamental problems in our system of relevance, integration and coherence, access, articulation, progression and portability, credibility and legitimacy, in a transparent way for all users of the system, the decision was taken to establish a qualifications framework i.e. a set of principles and guidelines by which records of learner achievement are registered to enable recognition of acquired skills and knowledge; the records reflect the required outcomes of the learning process. Hence at the systems organisational level, the NQF determines that a system organised around the notion of learning outcomes will drive education and training in South Africa.

In Summary:

The Four Basic Principles of OBE

  1. a) Clarity of focus about outcomes1
  • Always have the significant, culminating exit outcomes as the focus.
  • Let the students know what they are aiming for.
  1. b) Designing backwards
  • Design curriculum backward by using the major outcomes as the focus and linking all planning, teaching and assessment decisions directly to these outcomes.
  1. c) Consistent, high expectations of success
  • Set the expectation that OBE is for ALL learners.
  • Expect students to succeed by providing them encouragement to engage deeply with the issues they are learning and to achieve the high challenging standard set (Spady, 1994b).
  1. d) Expanded opportunity
  • Develop curriculum to give scope to every learner to learn in his/her own pace.
  • Cater for individual needs and differences, for example, expansion of available time and resources so that all students succeed in reaching the exit outcomes.

Also see: Assessors Course – based on Outcome Based Education

114924 Outcome Based Education

114924 Outcome Based Education


  • Short name:   Outcomes Based Education
  • Full description:   Demonstrate understanding of the outcomes-based education and training approach within the context of a National Qualifications Framework
  • Accredited: Yes, ETDP SETA NQF Accredited
  • SETA: Education, Training, Development & Practices Sector Education & Training Authority (ETDP Seta)
  • NQF: 5
  • Credits: 5
  • Duration:12 day
  • Re-Assessment fees: None
  • Hidden fees: None
  • Recognition: Based on the National Qualifications Framework that is Nationally Accepted in South Africa
  • Success rate of learner: Our success rate for complete assignments and certified learners currently is estimated at 99%.
  • Short-cuts: We don’t take any short-cuts such as POE building in the class and follow all the guidelines stipulated by SAQA and the SETA.

BOOKINGS: Book online through our booking site here.


Currently we have the following supporting structures in place for our members:

  • Telephone support.
  • Whatsapp –
    • Cell. 0825507946 Tel. 0867227014 English, Tel. 0318115749 English/Zulu.
  • Helpdesk – – 7 days a week (integrated email and sms notifications).
  • Members private forum with model answers to all  activities including JOB opportunities.
  • Check-out our reviews:

BOOKINGS: Book online through our booking site here.



  •  This course is based on the Unit Standards 114924  – click here to read more
  • People credited with this unit standard are able to:
    • Explain the outcomes-based approach to education and training;
    • Describe the National Qualifications Framework;
    • Describe and explain standards;
    • Describe and explain national qualifications; and
    • Develop a broad plan for implementing the NQF within an organisation.
  • Purpose of the course:
    • This unit standard is for those involved in education, training and development. This standard is not intended to recognize the ability to explain OBET and the NQF to learners. Rather, this unit standard is intended to recognise practitioners for their own understanding of OBET and the NQF.
  • Each learner will receive a learner guide and workbook during the contact session that will assist them with the building of their POE (Portfolio of Evidence).
  • Learner will receive full instruction from us before the course to assist with the preparation of the course. Where possible additional resources will be provided to learners who are not able to get there resources.
  • Learners are required to apply skills and knowledge obtained on the course in the workplace. As learners apply these skills, they produce evidence, which needs to be compiled into a portfolio of evidence (POE). This POE is submitted to Trainyoucan for assessment. Learners will receive a workbook and portfolio guide, which will guide them through the process. Any additional resources required will be provided by Trainyoucan to the learner, free of charge.


  • Training Manager
  • Mentors & Coaches
  • HR Persons
  • Managers who need to assess their staff
  • Persons with no formal experience of the SETA and the NQF
  • Recruitment Staff
  • Learning material developers looking to enhance their programmes
  • Anyone else who can benefit from assessment methodologies
  • New training providers applying for accreditation
  • Employers running learnerships

Also learners who study towards their ODETDP SETA Qualification. Click here for more detail


  • The credit calculation is based on the assumption that learners are already competent in the learning area in which they will provide training. (Have scope or experience to train in a specific field.)
  • Minimum of 14 days workplace experience in training or facilitation. (part time or full time)
  • Basic communication skills (English = reading and writing skills on a NQF level 4 (Grade 12 or equal))
  • Able to attend the contact session and any of our workshops offered.
  • Access to email and where possible to the internet for research.

Learner preparation for the contact session (Classroom Training)


  • Attending the full contact session. (Classroom Session)
  • Certified copy of ID and a detailed CV for registration purposes. (Indicating previous workplace experience)
  • Large A4 lever arch file.
  • Organisation or Provider policies where available or at least knowledge of the organisations assessment policy if any. These might include: *The assessment Policy of your organisation, The Moderation Policy of your organisation, The RPL Policy of your organisation, The re-assessment policy of your organisation, The appeals policy of your organisation. Where possible will TRAINYOUCAN provide template policies to learners who do not have access to these policies.
  • Copy of your organisations Assessment Guides if any implemented.
  • Visit your SETA’s website and determine if they have any policies or rules of contact for their assessors available. Where not possible will TRAINYOUCAN provide a copy of this.
  • Visit any SETA of your choice and obtain a copy of the Assessors Registration template that you must complete on completion and submit to your SETA. This is very helpful if you have any questions or answers regarding the completion of this document. (Where possible will TRAINYOUCAN provide copies of this.
  • Research the meaning and purpose of RPL.
  • Research the meaning and purpose of OBE Education in South Africa.

b) OPTIONAL: (Not required but for those who want to start with the research)

  • Laptop, I-Apple, I-Pot or I-Orange : Please bring! We will provide FREE WIFI Spot.
  • Internet access to view additional support on our Forum

How do we comply with the Unit Standards and Credits




The criteria for the accreditation of training providers define a number of requirements that include:

  • Administrative procedures and record keeping and policies.
  • Management review
  • Authorization of affiliates
  • Tutor selection, training and performance review
  • Issuance of training certificates
  • Learner Support
  • Delivery, Assessment and Moderation practices

NOTE: There are basically two different types of accreditation:

  1. The training provider or the institute must be accredited by a SETA. “ETQA” (Their offices, policies and procedures. This can be any SETA = does not matter what type of courses they offer.)
  2. Each learning programme or qualification is accredited with the relevant SETA “ETQA” who is responsible for this programme. Also note that the word “accreditation” does not mean they SETA accredited. It must say “NQF Accredited”.

How to confirm that you are not caught in a SCAM!

Before you can start with any course you should ask the following questions:

  • Is the course accredited and with what SETA? (Phone the SETA and ask to speak to the ETQA Manager or check their website for detail.
  • What is the process and duration from start to completion?
  • Are there any additional fees for support to re-submission?
  • Entry Requirements? Do you charge for registration and why?
  • What discount can I get if I do more courses with your institute?
  • What after support and resources to you offer?
  • Can you provide a list of references or reviews of learners who completed these courses before?
  • Is this course even the correct course for what I’m trying to do?