Integrating competency-based education with a case-based or problem-based learning approach in online health sciences

Ilse Johanna Sistermans*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

13 Citations (Web of Science)


In the current competitive and globalized economy, employers and professional organizations call for higher education institutions to deliver graduates with relevant competencies and skills. In response, a growing number of higher educational institutions is introducing competency-based education. This is particularly true for health science programs, which have a tradition of applying a case-based or problem-based learning approach. The effort to merge a problem- or case-based online learning approach with competency-based education offers various opportunities, while facing numerous challenges. To support these efforts, this paper aims at identifying suitable practices, as well as challenges for online course design and online learning activities for higher education health science programs, when integrating competency-based education with an online problem-based and/or case-based learning approach. It found various opportunities for online learning activities that support competency-based education, problem-based learning and case-based learning, whereas challenges relate to logistics, administration, and the affordances of an LMS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)683-696
Number of pages14
JournalAsia Pacific Education Review
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • Online learning
  • Competency-based education
  • Problem-based learning
  • Case-based learning
  • Online learning activities
  • Health sciences

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