What is Proficiency Based Learning?

Proficiency Based Learning (PBL) is a system of instruction and assessment based on students' mastery of the skills and content they are expected to learn before they progress to the next lesson, grade level, or graduation.


A proficiency based learning model is intended to raise academic expectations for all students, provide a more authentic way to assess and document student growth, and provide a more individualized education for each student. Students will be asked to document specific knowledge and specific skills they have acquired through their coursework as they work towards graduation. This year we are implementing some instructional and grade reporting changes as part of our transition to a proficiency based model.


The document “BUHS Ten Guiding Principles of Proficiency” provides an overview of the important components of a proficiency based system. This document can be found below.


As students progress through their coursework, they will develop proficiency in a set of transferable skills. BUHS transferable skills required for graduation beginning with the class of 2020 include: Clear and Effective Communication, Self-Direction, Creative and Practical Problem Solving, Responsible and Involved Citizenship, and Informed and Integrative Thinking. These transferable skills will help ensure a successful transition for our students after graduation.


All departments have developed rubrics (a scoring guide) designed to assess specific content standards for specific assignments. Content standards are established benchmarks for learning that define what students need to know and be able to do to attain proficiency.


Student course work will be assessed on a four point scale:

A score of 4: Exceeds the standard

A score of 3: Meets the standard

A score of 2: Partially meets the standard

A score of 1: Does not meet the standard.


A Parent's Guide to Proficiency Based Learning


Proficiency-Based Learning with UP for Learning

UP for Learning is pleased to share with you a new student narrated animation video to help explain the basics of proficiency-based learning.  This resource was generated by the Communicating School Redesign initiative to help schools around the state build public understanding and support for school change. Check out their video below: