V.E436

Powerful Portfolios

Powerful Portfolios

Students will analyze, select, and critique personal artwork for a portfolio presentation. They will select up to twelve images from their personal artistic production over the three years of visual arts they have taken in high school.

The images will be analyzed/critiqued by the student for the demonstration of achievement in the use of four categories—themes, media, design elements, and creativity.

This assessment assumes that students have been creating and documenting their art through digital photography over the course of more than two years of art classes, and that these classes have served to develop their understandings of art based on themes or “big ideas,” and the use of media, design elements (i.e., elements and principles), and creativity. Students must also have sufficient computer skills to create Word documents that contain images and save them as PDFs.

Students will demonstrate the ability to assemble a portfolio appropriate for an intended audience of reviewers for college entrance or competitive scholarships. They will present work in organized categories that will clearly demonstrate specific abilities, going beyond a simple collection of images, to show focused skills and the ability to apply organizational principles when presenting artwork.

This assessment is appropriate for programs using teaching based on themes/big ideas, the use of traditional modernist design elements and principles, and/or programs using “Postmodern Principles and Practices” as developed by Olivia Gude. The complete article in which these postmodern principles and practices are discussed is available at https://elearning.psu.edu/drupal6/content/aed813/pdfs/Gude_2004.pdf.

This item has not been field-tested by Michigan teachers.


This is an analytic rubric. The column on the left shows the dimension that is being measured in the student’s performance. The levels across the top row indicate the performance level in the dimensions. Occasionally all dimensions and performance levels are exemplified by multiple students in a single recording.

Teacher Scoring Rubric

  • Dimension
  • Theme

    Ability to create sustained investigation of a theme

  • Media

    Ability to demonstrate sustained investigation and development of skills in a single medium

  • Design Elements

    Effective use of modernist design elements and principles and/or postmodern principles and practices

  • Creativity

    Ability to use innovative processes to discover unique or new visual forms

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • Student presents fewer than three works that explore one or more themes.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three works that explore three different themes.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three works that explore two different themes.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three or more works that explore a single theme.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents fewer than three works in a single medium.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three works in a single medium showing ability in a single or very limited range of techniques.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three works showing sustained investigation in a single medium with a variety of techniques and outcomes.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three or more works showing unusually advanced ability in a single medium.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents fewer than three works that demonstrate the ability to use a specific modern or postmodern process, concept, or design element or principle.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three works that demonstrate the ability to use a specific modern or postmodern process, concept, or design element or principle.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three works that demonstrate the ability to use two specific modern or postmodern processes, concepts, or design elements and principles.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three or more works that demonstrate the ability to use three or more specific modern or postmodern processes, concepts, or design elements and principles.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents one or two works that show creative explorations or outcomes.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three works that show experimentation, exploration, revision, or other methods to develop a single creative solution.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three works that show creative solutions using experimentation, exploration, revision, and other processes to find creative solutions.

    N/A at this time.
  • Student presents three or more works that show widely varied solutions using experimentation, exploration, revision, and other processes to find creative solutions.

    N/A at this time.
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