Ellucian Brainstorm - Competency-based education (CBE) solution for higher education

Ellucian Brainstorm™

Ellucian Brainstorm™ is a first-of-its-kind competency-based education (CBE) solution designed for higher education, offering a personalized “made for me” experience for students. With Ellucian Brainstorm, educators seeking an effective competency-based education model can finally meet modern students where they are and give credit for what they already know.

Expand your reach and impact with adult learners

Provide pathways

Provide pathways

Build the right content toward competencies students need to master.

Personalize learning

Personalize learning

A “made-for-me” experience that gives credit for what students already know.

Drive engagement

Drive engagement

Substantive faculty/student interactions, with insightful feedback, and built-in interventions.

Reach students

Reach students

Continuous learning for students throughout their careers.


Full support for competency-based education programs

Full support for competency-based education (CBE) programs

helps you deliver content, manage student and faculty interactions, and meet the unique reporting needs of flexible-paced CBE programs.

  • Offers different instructional modes based on each student’s unique needs
  • Provides alternative credit models
  • Delivers personalized learning that puts students in control of their own academic experience
  • Integrates with student information systems to address challenges in registration, financial aid, rolling terms, billing and competency-level grades and transcripts
  • Separates grading, instruction, and grader-parity checks to improve efficiencies
Personalize the student experience

Personalize the student experience

by offering a highly intuitive and engaging user interface designed specifically for a competency-based education model.

  • Map all content and assessments (down to question-level) to competencies and track progress
  • Determine students’ proficiency and weaknesses with a configurable diagnostic pre-test
  • Automatically suggest remedial/additional content based on competencies that may not be demonstrated in assessment
  • Use either traditional grading, competency-based grade books, or both
  • Automatically suggest additional content based on formative assessments tied to competencies
  • Offer an interactive learning experience with a practice framework that helps pinpoint areas of struggle to the learner, faculty, and course designers
Self-paced learning

Flexible-paced learning

delivers differentiated, customized academic experiences that help students:

  • Apply prior knowledge and skills learned on the job or in other college courses
  • Create their own plan and due dates based on their life situation and abilities with an adaptive course plan and built-in progress bars
  • Personalize course schedules with a smart planning tool that helps them set their own pace and accelerate when they are ready or take more time if needed
Social learning and collaboration tools

Social learning and collaboration tools

make it easy for students to connect with and support each other, faculty, and staff.

  • Interact freely with peers and benefit from past learner-faculty interactions on the Answer Forum, a social knowledge base
  • Enable critical thinking discussions in a non-cohort/flexible-paced environment
  • Provide timely and targeted faculty feedback to improve student performance
Analytic tools

Analytic tools

support better decisions and continual improvements which enhance the CBE learning experience.

  • Present a scalable, cost-effective way to meet the needs of more students
  • Integrate learning tools and information systems for a comprehensive view of students
  • Track all student, instructor, and grader activities and time spent on each
  • Report on last date of attendance, satisfactory academic progress, and participation using accurate data
  • Apply built-in prescriptive analytics and CRM-like features to improve student outcomes
  • Get continuous feedback on students’ overall progress as well at the defined outcome level to keep them focused
University of the Incarnate Word: Keeping pace with the evolution of higher education

How it works

With Ellucian Brainstorm, administrators can create a full spectrum of competency-based education (CBE) programs, including certificates, credentials, and degrees, that can’t be achieved by simply retrofitting a learning management system (LMS). Designed for the reality of today’s digital society, Ellucian Brainstorm helps competency-based learning come alive through collaborative and crowdsourced study halls, peer-to-peer environments, and course content.

Data Sheet

Who is using Ellucian Brainstorm?

We understand that our students today are not like those of yesterday and require new methods of engagement. With Ellucian Brainstorm and CBE, we’re pushing to understand what students already know so we can more effectively engage with them.
Cyndi Wilson Porter, vice president for extended academic programs, the University of the Incarnate Word