Valid and reliable assessment of learning depends, amongst other things, on the precise definition of the outcomes and the expected results, as well as on the comprehensive description of performance criteria. In a competence-based approach assessment implies certifying the 'proof of competence’ by the student. Competence is seen here in a holistic sense, as the totality of (core) competencies required to perform as a competent professional.
Competencies signify the link between professional practice and personal intentions and are either innate or acquired and developed during an educational intervention. Therefore, the
formulation of competencies is an essential step in creating a competence-based learning
environment. Competencies can be defined after an analysis of the profession.
This article describes a needs assessment aimed at characterising a profession in the form of key occupational tasks or roles and translating this professional profile into a graduate profile, including the core competencies that are the focus of the educational intervention. The design
and development of a competence-based curriculum at the newly founded Faculty of Education at the Eduardo Mondlane University (UEM) in Maputo, Mozambique, will be used as an example.