Theory and research in the field of competence-based vocational education (CBVE) have advanced enormously during the last decades, although empirical research on CBVE lags far behind. CBVE researchers have complained about the lack of evidence that CBVE results in better competence development, the decreasing attention for knowledge development in CBVE practice, and the cross-sectional nature of much CBVE research. This study addresses these issues by reviewing a worldwide competence-based education literature and comparing competence and knowledge development of students in vocational schools in Indonesia that have implemented principles of CBVE to a higher or lesser degree. The study involved 506 students majoring in food processing and technology and 32 teachers from 11 agricultural secondary vocational schools. Teachers and students rated student competence levels. Student knowledge was assessed with a multiple-choice test. Longitudinal data were collected during one school year at three points of time. Student competence development in high-CBVE was higher than in low-CBVE, suggesting that the implementation of CBVE was successful and had a motivating effect of both students and teachers in Indonesian vocational schools. However, knowledge development was indeed lower in high-CBVE than in low-CBVE, which needs further attention.
- Agriculture vocational education
- Competence development
- Competence-based education
- Knowledge development