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This can be particularly useful if the portfolio is to be shared with external audiences unfamiliar with the coursework such as parents, other educators and community members.
What processes will be engaged in during the development of the portfolio? One of the greatest attributes of the portfolio is its potential for focusing on the processes of learning. Too often in education we emphasize the products students create or the outcomes they achieve.
But we do not give sufficient attention to the processes required to create those products or outcomes, the processes involved in self-diagnosis and self-improvement, or the metacognitive processes of thinking.
As a result, the products or outcomes are not as good as we or the students would like because they are often unsure how to get started, how to self-diagnose or self-correct or how to determine when a piece of work is "finished.
Selection of Contents Once again, identifying the purpose s for the portfolio should drive the selection process. As listed in the tables above, different samples of student work will likely be selected for different purposes.
Additionally, how samples are selected might also differ depending on the purpose. For example, for an evaluation portfolio, the teacher might decide which samples need to be included to evaluate student progress.
Unit 1: Introduction to Biology Complete the Big Ideas Assignment (due _____) Unit 1 Test Biology / Mendenhall UNIT 1: Introduction to Biology 2 / Login to access the Upswing Virtual Learning Center for Houston Community College. Other Content. In addition to samples of student work and reflection upon that work, a portfolio might also include a table of contents or a cover letter (both typically composed by the student) to aid a reader in making sense of the purposes, processes and contents of the portfolio.
On the other hand, including the student in the decision-making process of determining appropriate types of samples for inclusion might be more critical for a growth portfolio to promote meaningful reflection. Finally, a showcase portfolio might be designed to include significant input from the student on which samples best highlight achievement and progress, or the teacher might primarily make those decisions.
Furthermore, audiences beyond the teacher and student might have input into the content of the porfolio, from team or department members, principals and district committees to external agencies to parents and community members.
External audiences are most likely to play a role for evaluation portfolios. However, it is important to remember there are no hard rules about portfolios. Anything can be included in a portfolio. Anyone can be involved in the processes of selection, reflection and evaluation of a portfolio.
Flexibility applies to portfolios as it does to any authentic assessment. That is, you should be true to your purpose sbut you should feel no constraints on how you meet them with a portfolio assignment.
How might the selection take place? What I will describe below are just a few of the many possible avenues for selecting which samples will be included in a portfolio.
But these examples should give you a good sense of some of the choices and some of the decisions involved. Which work students select depends on the criteria used to choose each piece see below.
A peer might also provide some reflection on a piece of work to be included in the portfolio. Based on what criteria? Simply selecting samples of work as described above can produce meaningful stories about students, and others can benefit from "reading" these stories.
But the students themselves are missing significant benefits of the portfolio process if they are not asked to reflect upon the quality and growth of their work.The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University houses writing resources and instructional material, and we provide these as a free service of the Writing Lab at Purdue.
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