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School Library Certification

Portfolio Guidelines

Successful completion of the program portfolio is a requirement for the master’s degree and successful completion of the school library media preparation program. The electronic portfolio developed for the school library media preparation program is a collection of written documentation and artifacts with reflective writing that documents competency in the program’s five Learning Outcomes that relate to the South Carolina ADEPT Performance Standards for school library media specialists. The completed portfolio is submitted for evaluation toward the end of the semester the candidate intends to complete the school library media preparation program. (November 15 for the fall semester or April 15 for the spring semester). The audience for the portfolio is instructors and administrators of the School of Information Science who evaluate student progress and achievement, as well as future employers of School of Information Science graduates.

From the start of the program, candidates should begin identifying and collecting artifacts for the portfolio. Artifacts are tangible evidence of significant effort to demonstrate knowledge and proficiency. Some artifacts will be required assignments in specific courses, and the candidate will select others.  The completed portfolio for students will contain five entries (not counting the introduction and picture, résumé, vision statement, or professional development plan), which includes an artifact (or artifacts) and reflective writing.

Welcome or Introduction

The Welcome or Introduction Page welcomes visitors to the portfolio.  It should provide an overview of the content and how to navigate the portfolio.  A photograph is also part of the introduction and should be a head shot or a photograph taken in a professional setting. 

Resume

The resume is a brief overview of professional work experience and educational background.  It should include memberships in professional organizations, any professional presentations or publications, and any honors or awards.  The content of the resume should be posted on the resume portfolio page and attached as an artifact.

Vision Statement

The vision statement is a brief statement (300-400 words) of professional philosophy/beliefs, values, ethics that will govern a candidate’s behavior and practice as a school librarian.  It is a broad statement that describes the candidate’s understanding of the professional role of a school library media specialist and what the candidate believes are best professional practices and ethics in implementing the school’s library media program. 

Professional Development Plan

The Professional Development Plan consists of three parts.  In part one, candidates reflect on their professional development plan assignment for SLIS 701 and how it has evolved during the school library media preparation program. In part two, candidates assess the skills and knowledge acquired during the School of Information Science program of studies that prepare them to qualify as competent school library media specialists.  In part three, candidates explain how they intend to grow as professionals over the next five years. 

Entries Documenting Learning Outcomes

Documentation of competency in the five Learning Outcomes of the school library media preparation program is the core of the portfolio.  Each Learning Outcome will be documented with one entry (entries contain an artifact (or artifacts) and reflective writing).  An artifact is tangible evidence that indicates achievement or attainment of knowledge and skills related to the five Learning Outcomes.  Artifacts should represent significant efforts and accomplishments.  Examples of artifacts may include professional work samples such as action research, curriculum plans, student assessments, lesson plans, management and organization strategies, position papers, in-service/staff development workshops, reading promotion activities, collaborative units, policies and procedures, public relations and advocacy plans, program/grant proposals, and multimedia presentations.

Reflective Writing: Description, Analysis, and Reflection

Reflective writing is a three-step process that includes (1) description, (2) analysis, and (3) reflection.  Reflective writing accompanies each artifact selected or required for the portfolio.  The reflection helps explain how the artifact demonstrates the objective was met.  It serve as a record of the student’s self-assessment.

  1. Description (Step1)
    Description is an overview of the artifact.   It should include an explanation of how the artifact relates to the particular Learning Outcome(s) it addresses, and why it was selected for inclusion in the portfolio.  It sets the stage, explains the purpose, and tells “what, when, and who.”  It answers the question, “What did I do and why?”
  2. Analysis (Step 2)
    Analysis is the process of evaluation after the fact that looks at successes and failures, what was accomplished, what worked well and what didn’t work well, and the results of planned programs, lessons, collaborations, or other activities.  What were the results?  What did you learn from this experience?  It answers the question, “So what?”
  3. Reflection (Step 3)
    Reflection follows analysis.  It is the critical thinking that fosters professional growth and knowledge building.  Reflection is an opportunity to contemplate how to plan and implement activities in the future – same way, differently or not at all. “Reflection is the ongoing process of thoughtfully considering our practice in the context of personal and professional knowledge, assumptions, and beliefs, with the aim of achieving insights that lead to professional growth” (Heath 39).  The goal of reflection is professional growth that results in improved professional practice.  It answers the question, “What next?”

Matrix

The Matrix below documents the requirements of what must be included in program portfolios for all school library candidates. Use this document, along with the Portfolio Proficiency Statements document, to guide the creation of your portfolio.

Entry Portfolio for Students Seeking Advanced and Initial Certification
Introduction and picture
Résumé
Vision Statement 
 Professional Development Plan
Learning Outcome 1:  School Library Program Planning and Assessment
Your artifact will be your SLIS 720 Community and School Analysis (CSA) assignment.
 Learning Outcome 2:  School Library Program Administration and Management
Your artifact will be an assignment that you created to promote recreational reading from SLIS 756 or SLIS 757, or it can be a recreational reading activity that you completed during your internship.
Learning Outcome 3: School Library Collection and Resource Access and Management
Your artifact will be your Collection Mapping and Analysis (CMA) Assignment in SLIS 720, a weeding analysis, or other collection development activity you completed in your courses, or during your internship. 
Learning Outcome 4:  Collaboration for Instruction
Your artifact will be your SLIS 742 collaborative unit assignment, or another collaborative lesson plan that you completed during your internship.
Learning Outcome 5:  Professional Growth, Development, and Leadership
Your artifact will be a handout for an in-service professional development session for teachers, or a link to a virtual professional development session that you created.  The lesson should be one that you used during your practicum (at any of the schools you visited), or one that you developed to use in your future school library program.
 

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