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The implementation of portfolio assessment into the secondary mathematics curriculum

UNCW Author/Contributor (non-UNCW co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Brandon T. Hart (Creator)
The University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW )
Web Site:
Edward Caropreso

Abstract: The signing of the No Child Left Behind Act, NCLB, on January 8, 2002 made it clear that the government’s main concern in education was assessment. NCLB was designed to hold schools accountable for every student achieving academic proficiency. Since the signing of this important piece of legislature the mean proficiency score for the state of North Carolina in Algebra 1 has increased only 1.4 points. Traditional assessment methods such as standardized multiple choice tests are the current tool used for measurement of student proficiency. But, can you really measure whether students have mastered, or are proficient, in a subject by their score on one multiple choice test. Would a better judge of student proficiency be a semester or year long summative evaluation? This study discusses the potential advantages of implementing portfolio assessment into the mathematics classroom. I investigated the achievement levels of two Algebra 1B classes in which all participants had failed Algebra 1 at least once. Portfolio assessment was implemented in one class while the other received traditional assessment methods. The effects of implementing portfolio assessment were examined using the North Carolina Algebra 1 End of Course Exam scores. The results showed that implementing portfolio assessment did not lead to a higher mean score than the traditional assessment group. However, the two students in the portfolio assessment group who had previously taken the North Carolina Algebra 1 EOC Exam increased their achievement level on the exam by 30 points and 7 points respectively. Also, the mean scores were only 1.2 points apart and both classes were over 80% proficient which leads to a strong implication for portfolio assessment as a useful strategy for students who struggle in and/or fail Algebra 1.

Additional Information

A Thesis Submitted to the University North Carolina Wilmington in Partial Fulfillment Of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts
Language: English
Date: 2009
Mathematics--Study and teaching (Secondary)--Standards--North Carolina, Academic achievement--North Carolina--Evaluation
Mathematics -- Study and teaching (Secondary) -- Standards -- North Carolina
Academic achievement -- North Carolina -- Evaluation