I have really been focusing on the notion of “digital portfolios” and how they can be utilized in a different way than your standard portfolio. I have also had a constant focus on the NCTE Definition of 21st Century Literacies, which are the following:
- Develop proficiency and fluency with the tools of technology;
- Build intentional cross-cultural connections and relationships with others so to pose and solve problems collaboratively and strengthen independent thought;
- Design and share information for global communities to meet a variety of purposes;
- Manage, analyze, and synthesize multiple streams of simultaneous information;
- Create, critique, analyze, and evaluate multimedia texts;
- Attend to the ethical responsibilities required by these complex environments.
The one focus that I am going to discuss (explicitly) in terms of a digital portfolio is “create, critique, analyze, and evaluate multimedia texts.”
For example, I want a student to find a video or source that they believe is a good resource for learning. They then may embed a YouTube video into their blog and decide and list the criteria on why the video is powerful, and how it has helped them from learning. It is not necessarily “original” material from the student, but it is showing their learning process and why it is valuable.
The added bonus of having this done in a digital portfolio, not only is the ability to show the process of learning, but it is also the curation of resources that a student could actually have access to at a later date. Since this blog is a portfolio of my own learning, if I want to look up anything that I have written on “educational leadership”, I can simply find this through the search tool of my blog, or even by google searching “George Couros Educational Leadership“, to find my own information (while also building my own digital footprint). Imagine a student finding a video that they found valuable on “probability” and being able to find within their own resources, easily, the same video years later. If we have students doing this in a “scrapbook” or notebook, years later those resources will be lost or inaccessible.
When we look at portfolios, it should not be simply sharing our own work, but curating, critiquing, and analyzing the information that others share as well.