Problem Statement: Due to the differences in students’ learning styles, the use of alternative measurement and evaluation methods has become necessary. The assessment of students involves more than their responses to a series of test items. Measurement and evaluation is not just grading students through exam results. Thus, a new approach has become essential in measurement and evaluation within the reconstruction of curricula for an effective educational process.
Purpose of Study:The aim of this study is to examine the effects of portfolio assessment on the achievements and progress of students for the chapters ‘Systems of Our Body’ and ‘Breeding, Growth and Development in Living Organisms’ in the Science and Technology course.
Methods:An experimental method was used in the study. The method of pre-test and post-test design with a control group was employed. This study involved 6th grade students from public and private schools in Samsun, 108 for the spring and 114 for the fall semester. “Achievement Test”,“Portfolio Attitude Form” and “Student Portfolio Assessment Rubric” were applied. Paired-sample t-tests were employed, and the reliability was examined for the analysis of data using SPSS13. Open-ended and semi-structured questions were also used as a qualitative data collection tool for teachers and parents. The findings obtained were evaluated using description, content analysis and interpretation.
Findings and Results:Findings indicated significant differences between pre and post tests in the fall semester and no differences in the spring semester for both schools. Both public school students and private school students stated that they are happy with portfolio applications and they want them to continue. In the applied rubrics to assess self-efficacy, a significant difference was observed between the scores of experimental group students and researchers for both semesters in public and private schools. According to the answers from letters, it appears that the majority of students and parents are satisfied with this implementation.
Conclusions and Recommendations: Portfolio assessment allows different characteristics and talents of students to emerge, and also allows the evaluation of students with different features. The students will be more motivated and focused on related topics due to participating in their own evaluating period. Therefore, a more frequent employment of portfolio assessment in many units will be useful for students’ development.
Keywords: Portfolio assessment, achievement test, attitude, science education