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Why Am I Doing This?

Purposeful Teaching Through Portfolio Assessment

    After completing the book, readers will be more interested in alternative assessments, especially more authentic forms of assessment, and may begin to add depth and quality to their own outcomes assessment.

    —Reading Teacher

This book is a testament to the process of professional development inherent in the creation and use of alternative assessment. It offers demonstrable proof that when teachers engage in sustained inquiry, reflection, and communication about assessment, they can discover and define their own professionalism and refine their art of teaching.

Why Am I Doing This? is based...

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    After completing the book, readers will be more interested in alternative assessments, especially more authentic forms of assessment, and may begin to add depth and quality to their own outcomes assessment.

    —Reading Teacher

This book is a testament to the process of professional development inherent in the creation and use of alternative assessment. It offers demonstrable proof that when teachers engage in sustained inquiry, reflection, and communication about assessment, they can discover and define their own professionalism and refine their art of teaching.

Why Am I Doing This? is based upon Giselle Martin Kniep's work with over one hundred teachers in the Hudson Valley Portfolio Assessment Project. Under her direction, these teachers spent three years learning about, experimenting with, and reflecting on their use of assessment and its relationship to student achievement. Martin-Kniep reveals what she learned from the program, describing key assumptions and design components that drive not only powerful assessment experiences, but also changes in teachers' practices. Then eight program participants speak for themselves. They chart their own professional odysseys, focusing on changes in their own thinking and practice.

Although Why Am I Doing This? includes lots of practical ideas on the design and use of alternative assessment and showcases many examples of best practice, its overriding purpose is to document a change process. As such, it will have special appeal to readers who want to implement or study the impact of alternative assessment as well as those who participate in professional development experiences focusing on conditions that support teaching and learning.

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