Teacher Tap


Electronic Portfolios: Students, Teachers, and Life Long Learners

What's a digital or electronic portfolio?
How can I develop a student or teacher portfolio?
How can text, photos, diagrams, audio, video and other multimedia elements be integrated into a portfolio?

painterElectronic Portfolios are a creative means of organizing, summarizing, and sharing artifacts, information, and ideas about teaching and/or learning, along with personal and professional growth. The reflective process of portfolio development can be as important as the final product. In many cases, they are used as part of faculty and student evaluation along with other assessment tools such as standardized tests. A portfolio is a sampling of the breadth and depth of a person's work conveying the range of abilities, attitudes, experiences, and achievements.

Read and watch Dr. Helen Barrett on Electronic Portfolio Development from Apple Learning Interchange.

Explore a couple examples:

Technology and Electronic Portfolios

Traditionally, portfolios have been stored in boxes and three-ring binders. Although this format works fine for paper and other print-based materials, it misses many other ways ways of communicating ideas. Over the past decade, many people have found electronic portfolios as an effective way to more clearly present information not only through text, but also through visuals, audio, and video formats. Documents can be stored on hard drives, Zip disks, or CD-ROM in many digital formats such as text documents, picture files, web pages, digital video, and presentation files. They can be stored on hard drives, Zip disks, websites, or CD-ROM. Use the following websites to learn more about the development of electronic portfolios.

Electronic Portfolio Articles and Websites

The following articles and links pages provide good background information for electronic portfolios.

Professional Educator Portfolio Articles

Electronic Portfolio Links Pages

Sample Electronic Portfolios

Explore examples of online portfolios. If you're searching for additional examples, use a search tool such as Google and include search words such as digital electronic teaching learning video portfolio.

Software and Project-Specific Portfolio Examples

Many companies produce software that can be used to develop or store portfolios. Some examples are provided below:

Electronic Portfolio WebQuest

Many schools and universities are involving students in the development of portfolios. Consider using a webquest as a tool for motivating students as well as guiding them through the process. Explore the following examples, then create your own:

Professional Portfolios

Professional portfolios help faculty document their teaching achievement, as well as their other scholarly activities including research and service. The reflective process of portfolio development can promote better teaching, develop fresh thinking about education, and encourage personal and professional growth. Teaching portfolios provide faculty with an opportunity to reflect on their teaching goals, instructional strategies, methods, and materials, as well as student/teacher relationships. Many materials may be included in a teaching portfolio including professional plan (goals, philosophy, reflections), teaching materials (syllabi, lessons, activities, student materials, presentations), sample student documents and projects, curriculum vitae, course evaluations (students, peers, administrators, self), reflections, video/audio teaching samples, recognitions (awards, publications, letters), and professional development (personal plans, teaching innovations, professional activities, service, research, publications, presentations, grants).
The portfolio includes materials that provide evidence or information that document a specific activity, as well as an interpretation or reflection on the importance or relevance of this material. Electronic portfolios can be organized in many ways. According to the AAHE (American Association for Higher Education), a teaching portfolio should be structured, representative, and selective. Rather than being an archive of all professional work, a portfolio is intended to be comprehensive and representative of the breadth and depth of experience.

Explore Electronic Portfolios

Explore sample electronic portfolios. Discuss the aspects of each portfolio you find most valuable.
Organize resources for your own electronic portfolio.
Create guidelines for a student portfolio.

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