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Learning Goals

What is a competency, and what do we mean by an OPWL competency?

A competency in industry refers to knowledge, skills, attitudes, or personal characteristics necessary to successfully carry out one’s job. An OPWL competency is a knowledge unit, a skill-set, an attitude, or a personal characteristic that the OPWL curriculum is designed to help students build.

What are the OPWL student learning goals?

In order to ensure that each OPWL program is designed to provide educational experiences that help students develop required professional competencies and that the four OPWL programs are strategically aligned with each other, we conducted on-going self-studies and developed a set of student learning goals for each program (i.e., the competencies students will possess when they have successfully completed the program). Then, we designed OPWL courses to support the competency-based learning goals.

Learning Goals:

Image MS Degree in OPWL
MS Degree in OPWL


  1. Improve workplace performance in a way that is systematic
  2. Improve workplace performance in a way that is systemic
  3. Improve workplace performance in a way that is consistent with established professional ethics
  4. Improve workplace performance in a way that is consistent with established professional standards
  5. Responsible

  6. Align performance improvement solutions with strategic organizational goals
  7. Make recommendations that are designed to produce valued results
  8. Respectful

  9. Collaborate effectively with others, in person and virtually
  10. Communicate effectively in written, verbal, and visual forms
  11. Reflective

  12. Use evidence-based practices
  13. Contribute to the professional community of practice

Image Certificate in OPWL
WPI Certificate

  1. Diagnose performance problems and opportunities and recommend balanced systemic solution sets based on a broad spectrum of potential interventions.
  2. Create a systemic and data-based change management plan designed to successfully implement a performance solution
  3. Identify a balanced set of financial, environmental, and social indicators of success for performance solutions at any of three levels (worker, job/task. and organization)
  4. Identify and recommend performance solutions that incorporate the principles of systems thinking, human performance improvement, evaluation, change management, and sustainability into an integrated solution set.

Image Certificate in OPWL
WELPS Certificate

  1. Determine performance problems that require e-learning or blended learning solutions
  2. Select appropriate e-learning or blended learning solutions given the cause of the performance problem
  3. Design e-learning and blended learning solutions based on appropriate adult learning and instructional design principles
  4. Develop e-learning products with cost-effective rapid e-learning development tools

Image Certificate in OPWL
WIDe Certificate

  1. Create performance-based training that improves workplace performance
  2. Apply Merrill’s first principles of instruction in training design
  3. Apply learning strategies to design specific types of workplace learning content
  4. Apply design shortcuts to improve training effectiveness while shrinking development time and cost