The four stages of competence were originally developed at Gordon Training International by Noel Burch during the 1970s. These stages of competence provide a model that explains the four distinct stages of learning that lead to the successful mastery of a particular skill or area under study. These four stages include:
- Unconscious Incompetence: I don’t know and I’m simply not aware of what I don’t know that could help me perform at a higher level.
- Conscious Incompetence: I acknowledge and recognize what I don’t know and it excites me to start learning and getting better.
- Conscious Competence: I am in the process of learning what I want to master and I understand that this process takes time and effort.
- Unconscious Competence: I have mastered what I have been learning and this skill has become second nature. I am even capable of teaching it to others.