The purpose of a portfolio is to provide instructors and students with the opportunity to track the development and improvement of learning over time. When generating a portfolio of work, students can review and reflect on the various assignments in a course or program. A portfolio is a collection of student work organized to demonstrate the evolution of their experience and skills. A significant way of involving students in this process is to have them select specific works in order to analyze and reflect on each one. For example, the instructor may ask students to select the three best pieces and the two weakest pieces of their work throughout the semester, and comment on their choices. In addition, in courses in which students develop multiple iterations of a work, students may be asked to select instances that demonstrate the most tangible improvement and comment on the iterative process. Learning portfolios can also be used to record student reflections/journals during the experiential education component of a course and can include a variety of media such as podcasts, videos and photos.
To learn more about the possibilities of Digital Learning Portfolios please see:
- Learning Portfolios (Helen Chen, Stanford University)
- Field Guide to ePortfolios (Association of American Colleges and Universities)
Platforms for hosting ePortfolios
- Google Sites https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Aq4roixJ6A
- WordPress https://wordpress.info.yorku.ca
- Mahara https://mahara.org
- Folio spaces http://www.foliospaces.org
Tools/Technologies for creating ePortfolio content:
Designing Your Digital Presence Online
This lesson plan, by Elizabeth Gibes and Taylor Ralph, introduces undergraduates to online hosting options for portfolios, websites, designing a personal brand, and digital privacy.
University of Waterloo ePortfolio
This website includes examples of student portfolios as well as courses which have incorporated ePortfolios into their curriculum.
Teaching Dossier resources
These are provided York University’s Teaching Commons website.
Portfolios at PennState website
This site provides best practices for instructors and best practices for students in the creation of ePortfolios.
EPortfolio (digital portfolio) rubric example
From the University of Wisconsin Stout.
Personal Websites (with a WordPress lesson plan)
From the University of Victoria. Includes activities and a quiz.
Babcock, R. L., & Francis, R. W. (2018). Prior Learning Credit Via Portfolio: A Case Study of Central Michigan University’s Prior Learning Assessment Program. PLA Inside Out: An International Journal on Theory, Research and Practice in Prior Learning Assessment, (6).
Clarke, J. L., & Boud, D. (2018). Refocusing portfolio assessment: Curating for feedback and portrayal. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 55(4), 479-486.
Tse, C. T., Scholz, K. W., & Lithgow, K. (2018). Beliefs or Intentionality? Instructor Approaches to ePortfolio Pedagogy. The Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 9(3). https://doi.org/10.5206/cjsotl-rcacea.2018.3.10
Zubizarreta, J. (2009). The Learning Portfolio: Reflective Practice for Improving Student Learning. John Wiley & Sons.
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