Book Title: Portfolio Development and the Assessment of Prior Learning: Perspectives, Models and Practices
Publisher: Stylus Publishing
Author: Elana Michelson
For over thirty years, portfolios have been used to help adult learners gain recognition for their prior learning and take greater control of their educational experiences. The portfolio has become a distinctive means of assessing such learning, serving as a meaningful alternative to conventional papers and standardized testing. Portfolio Development and the Assessment of Prior Learning: Perspectives, Models, and Practices
provides a primer of flexible approaches to shaping and conducting portfolio-development courses. It offers practitioners in the field an extensive range of model assignments, readings, and classroom activities, each organized around a specific theme: Academic Orientation, The Meaning of Education, Personal Exploration, Learning from the Outsider Within, The World of Work and Careers, and Dimensions of Expertise. Twelve case studies by practitioners in the field then show how academics in the US and around the English-speaking world have adapted the portfolio to changing circumstances in order to deliver academically rich educational services for adults. These case studies highlight portfolio development in the context of web-based instruction, changing institutional imperatives, service to historically disenfranchised groups, partnerships with industry, and cross-institutional cooperation.
In addition to serving as a valuable hands-on resource for practitioners, Portfolio Development and the Assessment of Prior Learning locates portfolios and assessment in a broad social and intellectual context. Thus, the authors also offer an historical overview of the usefulness of portfolios in the assessment of prior learning and then consider their use in the future, given current trends in higher education for adults. The book explores the implications of a changing educational landscape, in which new student populations, budgetary pressures, and understandings of knowledge both enrich and challenge student-centered approaches such as portfolios.
The approaches and case studies are not only valuable to adult educators but, equally, to faculty in higher education concerned with the development of competency- and outcomes-based assessment.