A major challenge facing "authentic" instruction and assessment is the lack of evidence of their efficacy for students of color, excluding certain high-achieving Asian American groups, and poor students. This article considers the authenticity of performance-based assessments (PBAs), exploring their relationship to pedagogical practices that address ethnic and linguistic diversity. It details the author's efforts to transform English instruction and assessment in ways that draw upon cultural funds of knowledge that African American students bring from their home and community environments. Cognitive and cultural arguments for culturally responsive PBAs and the research implications of their use are presented.
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