Tuesday, December 7, 2010

ePortfolios: How To & Do You?

The end of the semester is rapidly approaching, and I've been thinking about the best way to do student writing portfolios, since I am committed to improving digital literacy, both for my students and myself.

As a model, I created an ePortfolio (work in progress) for my graduate course using GoogleSites with GoogleDocs. Here are the basic steps:

  1. Select Blank Template
  2. Add themes and design elements as you see fit
  3. Make homepage the table of contents
  4. Click edit side bar and delete the old navigation tab, then add a new one by clicking "add to sidebar" and "add navigation"
  5. Upload documents, powerpoints, etc. to GoogleDocs
  6. Create pages for the pieces of the portfolio
  7. On each page, add text introducing your work
  8. On each page, click "Insert Document" under the "Insert" tab, and add your document to the page
  9. Link in any additional work (such as blogs, wikis, websites, videos)
  10. Add pages to navigation bar by clicking "edit side bar," "edit navigation," then "add page" or "add url"
  11. Don't forget to save your work!

Interestingly enough, this ePortfolio actually stemmed from my desire to provide my students my bio. My bio on GoogleSites now links to my whole ePortfolio, so they can see the kinds of writing I am doing as a student, use it as a model if necessary, and hopefully feel that I can empathize with them a bit more.

I think it also provides a great, easy-access sample of my writing, my CV, and my bio for future employers, and shows them that I have a valuable skill-- digital literacy.

Yesterday, some of my students were putting together their sites in class. Some of them still wanted to do paper-based portfolios, and I allowed that option. The majority, however, were excited about getting to personalize their ePortfolios and thought it was a neat way to present their semester-long work.


  • How many of you use ePortfolios? 
  • What platforms do you use for ePortfolios?
  • Do you have a teaching ePortfolio?


  • Do you have an ePortfolio?
  • Did you enjoy making it?
  • What do you think is the best way to present your work (powerpoint, website, video, etc.)?
  • How do you feel about the idea of ePortfolios?
  • Does it make you uncomfortable to know your child's work is available electronically or even via web?
  • Do you like that it can be easily shared with other family members, friends, potential employers, and colleges?


Danielle Lee said...

Nicole, this is extremely helpful. I have created my own ePortfolio and I love it. I can't believe how helpful and functional it is to have everything I need for class in one space. Best of all, I can design however I want. Thanks for the tip!

literarychica said...

Wow, I had never heard of an ePortfolio before. I'm kind of old school, I guess, lol. I have all of my portfolio docs in different folders on my external hard drive, and I have hard copies of my portfolio, but I love the idea of putting it all together online for the perusal of students and employers. I might get to work on mine over the holiday break! Thanks for the suggestion.

In regard to having your students see your writing: lately I've made a point to talk to students about my own problems and strategies when I write. I'd like to think it helps them to see that I am a writer too and that I don't produce perfect prose on the first try. Also, that I'm not just teaching from a textbook, that these strategies are tried and true.

Drew said...

www.ebackpack.com looks like it will provide some cool tools as well as an ability to create an e-portfolio. Looks like other teacher specific tools are included too - homework dropbox, sharing, etc.