1. I don’t recommend About.me. Instead, I think students should own their own domain. Why use a third party provider that might shut down, get acquired, sell your data etc when you can actually control your own “space” and design your own “About” page? This connects to the digital portfolio, of course, and it can become a site to demonstrate professional work as well as “schoolwork.”

    • George

      I actually have wanted to do that myself. My “blog” you can get to by going to “georgecouros.ca” but it automatically forwards you to georgecouros.ca/blog. I have been saving that for the magical space that I have never created. I should get on that.

      Do you think there is any benefit in being listed on the “about.me” space though? I wonder if being connected to that network actually creates any opportunities? I actually get a lot of emails through that medium, which surprised me at first.

  2. I like very much your three suggestions, for sure. But I’d add a fourth – and maybe rank it most important: the skills of effective learning and effective problem solving along with the experience using them.

    Lifelong learning will never be an option. If a significant number of jobs in five years aren’t known, that would suggest that existing jobs will likely change as well. Effective learning skills AND the experience using them is essential.

    Likewise, the nature of work in this time of rapid change means success will depend upon being able use the prior knowledge, experience, and of course newly developed knowledge (effective learning) to address situations or assignments faced – i.e., effective problem solving.

    Ideally, development of these skills and their use to gain experience should begin as young as appropriate, certainly by high school graduation (not often accomplished based upon my anecdotal evidence from 30 years as college faculty member). Until changes occur in K-12, colleges indeed should facilitate skills development.

    Without any details, I might also suggest that communication skills and teaming skills are very important as well. Six things students should have they leave high school??? That would be my recommendation – but, again, I believe effective learning and problem solving skills are most important.

  3. Hello George,
    Based on our earlier conversations you know I am all for the students connecting, self-publishing, and self-branding. Even though I use about.me, I think Audrey is on the right track with the personal domain. I’m just trying to get my head around the logistics of making this happen for all of our students.
    In one of your earlier posts you asked “what are the roadblocks to digital portfolios?”. Your recommendation for these three things for students should also be applied to educators. I know that I am preaching to the choir, but teachers and administrators should also connect, learn and share transparently. They need to clearly understand the benefits and pitfalls of learning in a web 3.0 world. More than just modeling, educators should venture into socially networked learning with their students. Walk the walk, and talk the talk. Thanks & talk soon, Bob

  4. Jodi

    I read the above article for an assignment for my doctorate program and I have a few questions I was wondering if you could answer.

    • You started out talking about a variety of skills but the three suggestions focus more on networking, is there a correlation between the two which is why you switched gears?
    • What do you feel is more important; networking or job skills?
    • Could you be more specific as to what job skills are most likely to be relevant in today’s job market?
    • You spoke about Joti Jando utilizing “Dragon’s Den” in her classroom to motivate students to think less theoretically and more about real-world experiences, what have you learned from the students’ perspective about this type of teaching?
    • Do you really feel that the students will gain an upper hand in the development of their skills by being exposed to more real world experiences?

    Thank You,


  5. I like very much your three suggestions, for sure. Your recommendation for these three things for students should also be applied to educators. thanks!

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