About CBC

Competency-based certification framework for Bible translation and language development programs

Within the Bible Translation movement worldwide, there has been a need to create a broadly-embraced consultant certification system that accelerates certification processes, recognizes consulting specialties, and engages more local and national staff in the quality assurance process.

In many cases in the past the route to certification was unclear or out of reach for a lot of interested and capable people.

Moreover, the requirements for certification vary among agencies, and a single, broad category of “consultant” in a certain domain does not communicate the many specialty areas of expertise that are increasingly needed in today’s complex Bible translation and language development movement.

The competency-based certification (CBC) framework is a result of a collaborative effort with input from many partners including: Seed Company, Lutheran Bible Translators, SIL, ALEM, Faith Comes By Hearing, Wycliffe US, Pioneer Bible Translators.

To encourage, track and certify the professional development of our staff, CBC is not only used in the area of Bible translation but also in many other domains such as Literacy & Education, Anthropology, Linguistics, Language Assessment, Scripture Engagement, Language Technology, Language Programme Management, Media, Learning and Development and more!

Professional development plans based on an agreed set of well-defined competencies are available at specialist, consultant and senior consultant levels in the Competency Manager online tool. Each development plan has two main parts: a set of general consulting competencies required for consultants in all domains, and a set of domain-specific competencies. The online software allows users to easily track their development in these competencies. Competency Manager also contains suggested activities and many other features to help mentors, mentees and managers and to facilitate life-long learning in our organisations.

Translation steering committee

The domain-specific competencies for Bible translation are overseen by an inter-agency steering committee that meets at least annually to review comments and suggested improvements.

The current committee members are:

  • Phil King (SIL, chair)
  • Swapna Alexander (Faith Comes By Hearing)
  • Teryl Gonzalez (Wycliffe US)
  • Brad Willits (Pioneer Bible Translators)
  • Dan Jones (Seed Company)
  • Norval da Silva (ALEM)
  • Eshinee Veith (Lutheran Bible Translators)

Please contact us if you have any input about the specific competencies.

What are the benefits of competency-based certification?

Highly personalised

It enables mentors to help their mentees to create personalised and effective training plans with measurable goals according to the mentees’ professional development needs.

Relevant to role

Only those criteria are used for measuring competencies that are relevant to real-life scenarios in a given role and correspond to current needs and realities in the domain.

Facilitates lifelong learning

The competency-based certification framework helps to establish a system of continuous improvement at all levels and promotes lifelong learning.

What are the proficiency levels in the CBC system?


The mentee does not yet have any competency in the particular competency


The mentee has knowledge about the particular competency


The mentee can do the tasks required by the competency but only with assistance


The mentee can independently do the components of the particular competency

Is your organization interested in using CBC?

How can we collaborate with you?

We would be delighted to hear from you!