Measuring student achievement (and the quality of educational programs) via standardized testing that is aligned with homogenized curriculums (i.e. common core mandates) is “pointless”. Since ignorance is “bliss” — I shall direct my comments to those “agencies” perpetuating standardization. –STOP– the madness, you are wasting time, precious resources and another generation of “potentially” productive beings.
Authentic learning varies among individuals; therefore, “authentic assessment strategies” must accommodate for differences among practitioners (and their students). Portfolio mechanisms are technologically and economically feasible. So, we must move the policy debate forward–How can we initiate these measures ASAP?
Consider the following rationale!
Portfolios represent a self-selected and reflective documentation of achievement (i.e. growth in understanding and skill). They may materialize as a collection of professional and/or student work that is placed in a folder, or as a more comprehensive and structured production. Realizing that advancements in computer technology have made e-formats feasible; they may include a broad range of artifacts, discourse, and video recordings (i.e. performances) that represent the on-going development and verification of competencies realized by educators and/or their students. Usually such collections include a brief introduction to the contents that follow; a summary component that communicates how the products were assembled, and a reflective caption that conveys why each piece is significant. The compilation process requires practitioners/students to engage in introspective acts (i.e. self-evaluation and reflection). As an on-going documentation of development, the [evolving] process provides a means to actively engage practitioners (or their students) in constructing knowledge and evaluating their performance. It also “becomes the basis for conversations and other interactions among students … teachers and parents” (Murphy, 1998, p.7).
When teachers (are required) to develop professional portfolios; we shall have the means to evaluate teacher effectiveness and program outcomes in an “authentic” context. Likewise, portfolios created and maintained by students will authenticate the unique characteristics of all students! Read more? http://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/kennethfetterman
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