Portfolio Assessment as Pedagogy: Transforming Learners Across the College
Assessment is an integral component of good teaching and learning. Portfolios, in particular, provide students with the opportunity to reflect on their learning while allowing the institution to assess student success in achieving learning outcomes. The impetus for implementing portfolio assessment at our institution was a revamping of our liberal education program; it was developed through an innovative across the college process involving faculty, staff, and students. Emphasizing both reflection and assessment, the student learning portfolio parallels the processes used at our college for faculty, program and institutional self-assessment and evaluation. The decentralized nature of the portfolio, with reflective elements embedded in the curriculum and a shared responsibility among departments at various points in the portfolio process supports the need for diverse assessment across a variety of majors at an institution with both traditional Liberal Arts and Sciences and pre-professional programs. Designed to connect and deepen the learning experiences students have across four years of college, through liberal education courses, majors, and co-curricular experiences, the portfolio encourages and helps students to become more reflective agents of their own learning while providing their professors and the institution with a powerful tool for assessing the effectiveness of academic and co-curricular programs and teaching.
Keywords: Portfolio Assessment, Liberal Arts College
Dr. Janice K. Ewing
Associate Professor and Department Chair, Social Sciences and Education, Colby-Sawyer College
Associate Professor and Liberal Education Coordinator, Social Sciences and Education, Colby-Sawyer College