Competence-based Knowledge Space Theory
The CbKST forms the pedagogical infrastructure for the INNOVRET model. The CbKST is a framework for representing the conceptual organization of a given body of competences.
The CbKST, as a cognitive approach, extends the behaviorist Knowledge Space Theory and requires the identification of threshold concepts and associated pre-requisite and co-requisite relationships. It also requires the creation of appropriate assessments to evaluate competence in said threshold concepts.
Threshold concepts represent a transformed way of understanding something without which the learner would find it difficult to progress. In the case of the INNOVRET model, they represent a set of competences (skills, abilities, knowledge and understanding of concepts) which underlie the set of problems for the heat pump domain.
In the INNOVRET model, the continuous monitoring of the learner’s progress will result in the adaptation of the content and assessments based on the learner’s competence level. Social constructivism is endorsed through the support of personalised; observational and experiential learning (via the online visualization analysis and evaluation of heat pump design and performance under different loading conditions) so that in addition to the learner’s own observations of and interactions with the online energy laboratory and discussions with the facilitator and his/her peers, social isolation is mitigated.