What is wrong with the OBE?

Letters, Normal

PAPUA New Guinea, under its education reform policy, has adopted the outcome-based education.
The curriculum is relevant as it puts more emphasis on skills development, integral human development and the use and maintenance of its cultures and local languages.
The OBE curriculum will provide for the return of the children to the village community, for formal employment, or for furthering their education and training.
The OBE is a more professional and formal approach to teaching unlike objective-based syllabus. 
In OBE, the learning outcome of each subject is critically evaluated and the contents are designed with the prime motive to identify the relevant knowledge and skills the students will be required to achieve at each level.
The learning outcomes describe the factual concept of the content and are aimed at different cognitive levels and skills.
This is referred to as knowledge and skills – what students learn about and what students learn to do.
The focus of OBE is to guide students’ learning and support teachers to identify different key learning areas.
Most significantly, it clearly outlines the important skills/knowledge in the content of each subject which students should learn in more detail.
The assessment of OBE is based on what is called standard referencing system.
It is a framework called marking guidelines and is based on Bloom’s Taxonomy that describes different levels of thinking or skills.
In any formal assessment task given to students, there must be a marking guideline.
A marking guideline consists of marking criteria which clearly informs students on how to answer a question and also explains why different weightings are given to each question.
The assessment of OBE is very effective and transparent because the “why” and “how” of the questions are made known to the students.
It is a clear check and balance system that tells what students should know, and how they should answer the questions and why various tasks are given different weightings.
Thus, it enables a child to fully discover and utilise his or her talents.
The approach of OBE in PNG is unique compared to other countries in the world who have adopted OBE curriculum.
PNG has a blended curriculum compared to the United States, Australia South Africa and other countries.
It has a curriculum that integrates both the objective-based syllabus and OBE.
Its learning approach is child centred rather than teacher orientated.
Hence, the outcome of each individual student is assessed, ranked and graded.
This then creats an optimum environment for standard and competitive education to its citizen.
OBE curriculum in PNG is appropriate and it is not as perceived by the majority.


Dabele Morremuge
Port Moresby