In my TAB studio, I have no deadlines. So, how can I further tweak my assessment system to keep students accountable for studio work when there are no real deadlines? This question was at the core of my thinking about assessment way back in September. So, I have spent the majority of this year further developing a system of grading that lets students take control of their art while providing me with information about their growth as artists.

This year, I have required weekly updates to students’ digital portfolios. Their portfolios are process-based. The process portfolio supports and informs students’ developing studio work, through exploration of skills and art processes. They reflect on how ideas are formed, how they made decisions regarding the intentions for their work and their overall growth as an artist.

My students’ writing is improving each week; however, I know that this is an area I will re-visit this summer on a quest to further push student reflection and self-assessment. While this may sound negative, the switch to weekly updates has been a positive change to my formative assessment system. The weekly review of all portfolios gives me insight into where students are finding success, as well as where they are struggling. It has informed my lesson-planning to best accommodate individual student needs. Furthermore, it keeps students accountable for their work as artists.