What are artifacts?
Portfolio Artifacts and Course Assignments
As indicated above, your portfolio will contain artifacts as evidence of your competence in each of the 12 program standards. Some artifacts will be required in your courses and field experiences; these will represent the minimum evidence of your competence in each standard. To show your competence in a more robust and creative way, you will also want to include a wide variety of optional artifacts. The program-specific portfolio materials you receive from your program will list the required artifacts and may suggest some optional ones.
Required artifacts are, in most cases, also course assignments that are evaluated in determining your grade for the course. Keep in mind that the assessment of an artifact for your portfolio is not necessarily the same as its evaluation for your course grade. For example, in one of your early courses, your instructor might assign a paper dealing with some important educational issue. The instructor might also identify the paper as a required portfolio artifact. Using grading criteria established for the course, you might earn a B+ on the paper, and this will be used in calculating your final course grade. However, using a portfolio rubric to assess the paper as an artifact, the instructor might indicate that the paper shows you as Emerging for one of the 12 program standards. In other words, although you did pretty well in meeting course criteria, you still need to improve on the specific program standard.
How can this be? The answer has to do with expectations. Your B+ on the paper reflects how well you met the expectations for the course at that particular point in your program. The Emerging assessment reflects how well you met the expected criteria for Cleveland State students at the end of their teacher preparation programs.
Still confused? Let’s consider a different example. When you were very young and took your first “baby step,” it was probably a cause for celebration in your family. Everyone praised you, called you wonderful, and said it was the greatest thing that ever happened (or something like that). Think of that first step as earning an A+ in walking for a toddler. However, compared to what is expected of your walking ability at this point in your life, would you call that first step Exemplary? Proficient? Emerging? Would someone walking like a toddler at age 23 be seen as a proficient walker? Probably not. For the same reason, that B+ paper early in your program might only be assessed as Emerging at the end of your program
Table 4 provides examples of the kinds of artifacts you may include in your portfolio to provide evidence of your competence in each program standard. The list is not complete; you will surely come up with additional kinds of artifacts as you develop your portfolio. In addition, most of your professional courses will require specific artifacts that must be included in at least your working portfolio.
Cleveland State University
College of Education and Human Services
Julka Hall 210
2121 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44115
Julka Hall 210
2485 Euclid Avenue