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The term authentic assessment describes the multiple forms of assessment that reflect student learning, achievement, motivation, and attitudes on instructionally relevant classroom activities. Often, traditional types of assessments (i.e., essays, multiple choice, fill-inthe-blank, etc.) are heavily language dependent. These content assessments quickly become English proficiency tests rather than a measure of what students know. Limited English Proficient (LEP) students frequently have difficulty expressing their mastery of content unless they have a certain level of English proficiency. Teachers often fail to note cultural and linguistic differences that can affect how LEP children learn. This lack of knowledge may result in teachers having difficulty accepting differences and appropriately accommodating LEP students’ needs. Assessment is fair when it is personalized, natural, and flexible, when it can be modified to pinpoint specific abilities and function at the relevant level of difficulty, and when it promotes a rapport between teachers and students. Several challenges to using authentic assessment methods. They include managing its time-intensive nature, ensuring curricular validity, and minimizing evaluator bias. Portfolio Assessment The concept of portfolio development was adopted from the field of fine arts where portfolios are used to display illustrative samples of an artist's work. The purpose of the artist's portfolio is to demonstrate the depth and breadth of the work as well as the artist's interests and abilities. Many educators perceive the intent of educational portfolios to be similar to that of portfolios used in fine arts, to demonstrate the depth and breadth of students' capabilities through biographies of students', descriptions of students' reading and writing experiences, literacy folders, collections of pieces of writing, comparison reports, and student work exhibitions. Although portfolios using the model developed in the fine arts may be appropriate for illustrating student work, the model must be expanded to accommodate informational needs and assessment requirements of the classroom. A portfolio used for educational assessment must offer more than a showcase for student products; it must be the product of a complete assessment procedure that has been systematically planned, implemented, and evaluated. The Portfolio Assessment Model distinguishes clearly between portfolios and portfolio assessment. A portfolio is a collection of a student's work, experiences, exhibitions, self-ratings (i.e., data), whereas portfolio assessment is the procedure used to
plan, collect, and analyze the multiple sources of data maintained in the portfolio. A portfolio that is based on a systematic assessment procedure can provide accurate information about the depth and breadth of a student's capabilities in many domains of learning. Traditional assessment practices in many states and school districts have tended to exclude students who are learning English as a second language. As a consequence, many English language learners (ELLs) are denied access to important educational opportunities that are based on assessment results. An assessment portfolio is the systematic collection of student work measured against predetermined scoring criteria. These criteria may include scoring guides, rubrics, check lists, or rating scales. Assessment portfolios can include performance-based assessments, such as writing samples that illustrate different genres, solutions to math problems that show problem-solving ability, lab reports that demonstrate an understanding of a scientific approach, or social studies research reports that show the ability to use multiple sources. In addition, district-wide assessment portfolios can include scores on commercially developed, nationally norm-referenced tests, such as the Iowa Test of Basic Skills, or results of state assessment measures, such as the Maryland School Performance Assessment Program, as well as other information pertaining to students' educational backgrounds. Other types of Esl Assessment are: Oral Interviews Informal and relaxed context Conducted over successive days with each student Record observations on an interview guide Story or Test Retelling Student produces oral report Can be scored on content or language components Scored with rubric or rating scale Can determine reading comprehension, reading strategies, and language development Writing Samples Student produces written document Can be scored on content or language components Scored with rubric or rating scale Can determine writing processes
Projects/ Exhibitions Students make formal presentation, written report, or both
Can observe oral and written products and thinking skills Scored with rubric or rating scale Experiments/ Demonstrations Can observe oral and written products and thinking skills Scored with rubric or rating scale
ConstructedResponse Items -
Student produces written report Usually scored on substantive information and thinking skills Scored with rubric or rating scale
Teacher Observations - Record observations with anecdotal notes or rating scales
A shared vision of student goals and standards
By developing an assessment portfolio system that includes English language learners, teachers, administrators, parents, and students can shape a common vision of what students should know and be able to do as a result of their course work. By clearly articulating expectations and the criteria upon which to assess attainment of these expectations, school systems help create a shared vision of the purpose of education based on the values of the community.