How one facilitates the second step, selection , depends on the kind of portfolio process or product oriented and to what degree a teacher stipulates portfolio requirements. In this step, students will go through the work they collected and select the artifacts for their portfolio. Many characteristics about the curriculum come to light in this step, particularly the nature of the work students are doing in class. For instance, if all students have to show are quizzes and tests, the portfolio will be rendered almost meaningless by failing to shed light on anything other than a student's ability to take exams.
In this manner, portfolios provide a great deal of motivation to diversify approaches to teaching and learning. Designing and Implementing a Portfolio Program. Portfolios: Assessment Strategies. Multiple Intelligences: An Overview. Spend more time teaching and less time searching. Get full, ad-free access to all our learning resources—curated and vetted by teachers and curriculum specialists—for one-low price.
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Sign Up Sign Up. We have a plan for every budget. Skip to Main Content. Search in: This Journal Anywhere. Advanced search. Submit an article Journal homepage. Pages Published online: 03 Jun Original Articles. Clarifying different types of portfolio use. Article Metrics Views. Article metrics information Disclaimer for citing articles.
People also read Article. While portfolio assessment has been predominantly used in educational settings to document the progress and achievements of individual children and adolescents, it has the potential to be a valuable tool for program assessment as well. Many programs do keep such albums, or scrapbooks, and use them informally as a means of conveying their pride in the program, but most do not consider using them in a systematic way as part of their formal program evaluation.
However, the concepts and philosophy behind portfolios can apply to community evaluation, where portfolios can provide windows into community practices, procedures, and outcomes, perhaps better than more traditional measures. Portfolios extend beyond test scores to include substantive descriptions or examples of what the student is doing and experiencing.
Documenting progress toward higher order goals such as application of skills and synthesis of experience requires obtaining information beyond what can be provided by standardized or norm-based tests. Contents of portfolios sometimes called "artifacts" or "evidence" can include drawings, photos, video or audio tapes, writing or other work samples, computer disks, and copies of standardized or program-specific tests.
Data sources can include parents, staff, and other community members who know the participants or program, as well as the self-reflections of participants themselves. Portfolio assessment provides a practical strategy for systematically collecting and organizing such data. For example, within a program with the general purpose of enhancing children's social skills, some individual children may need to become less aggressive while other shy children may need to become more assertive.
Each child's portfolio asseessment would be geared to his or her individual needs and goals. Because portfolio assessment emphasizes the process of change or growth, at multiple points in time, it may be easier to see patterns. Participants, their families, funders, and members of the community at large who may not have much sophistication in interpreting statistical data can often appreciate more visual or experiential "evidence" of success.
For example, it would be unneccessary to compile a portfolio of individualized "evidence" in a program whose sole purpose is full immunization of all children in a community by the age of five years. The required immunizations are the same, and the evidence is generally clear and straightforward.
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While portfolios can and often do include some standardized test scores along with other kinds of "evidence", this is not the main purpose of the portfolio. Using portfolios can help you to document the needs and assets of the community of interest. Portfolios can also help you to clarify the identity of your program and allow you to document the "thinking" behind the development of and throughout the program. Ideally, the process of deciding on criteria for the portfolio will flow directly from the program objectives that have been established in designing the program.
However, in a new or existing program where the original objectives are not as clearly defined as they need to be, program developers and staff may be able to clarify their own thinking by visualizing what successful outcomes would look like, and what they would accept as "evidence". Thus, thinking about portfolio criteria may contribute to clearer thinking and better definition of program objectives.
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Critical to any form of assessment is accountability. In the educational arena for example, teachers are accountable to themselves, their students, and the families, the schools and society. The portfolio is an assessment practice that can inform all of these constituents. The process of selecting "evidence" for inclusion in portfolios involves ongoing dialogue and feedback between participants and service providers. Portfolio assessment of the program or participants provides a means of conducting assessments throughout the life of the program, as the program addresses the evolving needs and assets of participants and of the community involved.
This helps to maintain focus on the outcomes of the program and the steps necessary to meet them, while ensuring that the implementation is in line with the vision established in Tier 1. Items are selected for inclusion in the portfolio because they provide "evidence" of progress toward selected outcomes. Whether the outcomes selected are specific to individual participants or apply to entire communities, the portfolio documents steps toward achievement.
Usually it is most helpful for this selection to take place at regular intervals, in the context of conferences or discussions among participants and staff.
Examiner perceptions of a portfolio assessment process
One of the greatest strengths of portfolio assessment in program evaluation may be its power as a tool to communicate program impact to those outside of the program. While this kind of data may not take the place of statistics about numbers served, costs, or test scores, many policy makers, funders, and community members find visual or descriptive evidence of successes of individuals or programs to be very persuasive. By viewing the total pattern of the community or of individual participants, one can identify areas of strengths and weaknesses, and barriers to success.
It offers the possibility of assessing the more complex and important aspects of an area or topic. The primary concern in getting started is knowing the purpose that the portfolio will serve. This decision defines the operational guidelines for collecting materials. For example, is the goal to use the portfolio as data to inform program development?
To report progress? To identify special needs? For program accountability? For all of these?
In collecting data, many things need to be considered. What sources of evidence should be used? How much evidence do we need to make good decisions and determinations? How often should we collect evidence? How congruent should the sources of evidence be?
Related background information of portofoli assessment
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