|Frequently Asked Questions about EdSteps
Why should I submit my work samples?
Submitting work samples has two benefits. First, submitting your work online allows you to create an online portfolio of your work. If you are a student, submitting work online also allows you to submit work directly to your teacher for comments. Second, submitting your work allows you to participate in the creation of a new system for improving education. Many of the work samples that are collected will be placed on a continuum so that teachers, students, and professionals will be able to see concrete examples of work samples at all ability ranges in different skill areas. EdSteps will change the conversation on how we determine 'how good is good enough?' Participating means that you are represented in this movement.
Do I need permission to upload my work?
If you are under the age of 18, you will need permission from your parent or guardian in order to submit your work. When you click "submit work," you will be asked to submit your parent or guardian's name and e-mail or his or her home mailing address. Your parent or guardian will then receive an e-mail or letter to which he or she will need to respond in order to grant permission for the use of your work by EdSteps. For a copy of the permission slip you can print, please click here.
Will people see my name on work I submit?
EdSteps asks that you remove your name before submitting your work. If you do not remove your name, it will be removed for you before any work is published to preserve your anonymity and the anonymity of your school or organization. Only when the work has previously been published in an academic journal or publication will the name be preserved.
How will EdSteps be published?
For each skill area, student work will be presented in a continuum - a gradual progression - from emerging to accomplished work. In addition to showing this progression of skill, the continuums will offer:
■ Context for each work sample. Visitors will see detail about each student work sample, including the grade level of the student who created the work and the purpose of the work or the audience. Work samples will not include the author’s name or school.
■ Reflections by educators and visitors. Each sample will be annotated with comments by educators.
■ Reference points for grade levels. Each continuum will show a variety of work produced by students in all grade levels. Users also will be told where on the continuum they are most likely to find submissions by students in each grade level.
■ Options for searching. In addition to the organization by grade level, visitors will be able to search the continuums using criteria such as gender, subject area, and type of assignment.
Every EdSteps continuum will be different because each continuum is generated from the work samples collected for that particular skill. The continuums of student work will all be published online and will be open to the public to review in the next 1-2 years.
For a draft example of what the EdSteps continuums will look like, see the link on the left side.
Do I have to live in the United States to submit work?
No. We welcome work from anywhere in the world.
Who is using EdSteps?
EdSteps has had over 25,000 visitors. In the past three months, EdSteps has been visited by teachers, students and parents in 108 countries and 6 continents. Our top 10 countries visiting EdSteps are the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, India, Japan, Germany, Australia, Brazil, the Netherlands and Spain.
Do I have to register to submit work?
Do I have to register to submit work? No, you do not need to register and create an account in order to submit work. Registering allows you to save time the next time you submit work and allows you to connect with other EdSteps users. To submit work without registering, click on Submit Work and follow the instructions for uploading work. You will need to register and create an account if you would like to participate as a rater.
Who will see the information I enter?
Who will see the work samples I submit?
Each work sample you submit will be viewed by readers from across the country who will evaluate it to help build the continuums of sample work from novice to expert in each skill area. Readers will not receive any information about you and you and your school or organization will be completely anonymous.
Will I receive feedback on my work once I submit?
You will not receive any direct feedback on your work and we cannot guarantee that your work will be published in any of the continuums. If your work sample is selected to be published online, it will be available to anyone online, but all of your personal information will remain confidential. The only information that would be available online would be your anonymous work sample and the comments of readers.
What format of work will EdSteps accept?
EdSteps.org will accept work samples in any electronic format, including all types of documents, PowerPoints, video and audio files. There is no minimum or maximum length or file size. For more specific information on what types of work samples to submit, visit the official pages of each skill area.
- For detailed information about submitting work samples for Writing, click here
- For detailed information about submitting work samples for Global Competence, click here
- Detailed information about submitting work in the other skill areas will be coming soon.
Do you want only work I created for school?
No, EdSteps welcomes samples of writing and global competence created for any purpose—for school, for fun, for work or for any other reason. You are welcome to submit your favorite work products completed for any reason.
Can people outside of education participate?
EdSteps welcomes everyone. EdSteps seeks the active participation of teachers and students in pre-school through graduate school, as well as the participation of members of the business community and adults of all professions. EdSteps also seeks the involvement of partner organizations. If you or your organization is interested in showing your support of EdSteps publicly, please contact email@example.com to follow-up.
Who created EdSteps?
EdSteps was created by the Council of Chief State School Officers through the support of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. EdSteps.org was built in partnership with the New York Times Knowledge Network and Epsilen.
If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 202.336.7032.