The Use of a Portfolio to Enhance Authentic Assessment among In-service Student-Teachers’ in Social Studies Education at the University of Botswana
Mavis B. Mhlauli, Keinyatse Kgosidialwa

This study examines a set of portfolios developed by a group of Bachelor of Education (Primary) 4th year inservice student-teachers and their views on the use of a portfolio to enhance authentic assessment in the teaching of a course named EPS 403 on International Organizations and Governance in the Department of Primary Education at the University of Botswana for the academic year 2013/14 and 2014/15 respectively. The study adopted a particularistic case study design and used content analysis to understand the student teachers’ views and ideas on the use of a course portfolio as an assessment tool. A total of 150 students’ portfolios that were developed by a group of in-service student-teachers with a specialization in social studies education formed the population for this study. Purposive sampling was used to select the documents for analysis. The sample comprised of 74 students’ portfolios. Data were analysed inductively and corroborated using descriptive statistical techniques through the Statistical Package for Social Sciences Version 23. The findings of the study indicated that participants attach value to the use of a portfolio as an assessment tool and perceive it as a worthwhile exercise as it greatly encourages students to develop critical thinking skills, creativity, collaboration as well as developing academic and social skills. The conclusion drawn from these findings is that the use of a portfolio is viable for in-service teacher development as it promotes a conducive learning environment devoid of competition. The study recommends a paradigm shift for social studies educators to consider the use of a portfolio as an assessment tool for in-service teacher development in combination with tests and examinations that are predominantly accorded a higher status at the University of Botswana.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jehd.v5n3a10