“An electronic portfolio...is a collection of electronic evidence assembled and managed by a user, usually on the Web (also called Webfolio)...E-portfolios are both demonstrations of the user's abilities and platforms for self-expression, and, if they are online, they can be maintained dynamically over time...E-portfolios, like traditional portfolios, can facilitate students' reflection on their own learning, leading to more awareness of learning strategies and needs. Results of a comparative research between paper based portfolios and electronic portfolios in the same setting, suggest use of an electronic portfolio leads to better learning outcomes” (Wikipedia, 2009, p.1).
A few weeks ago I opened my own online E.Portfolio account through Mahara. Through this process I was charged an annual fee of five dollars to own up to 100MB of storage space on the internet and for a lot more space I can purchase it for a very small price. Just like Flickr, this is like a highly secure internal hard drive that I can access anywhere in the world on any computer. This area allows me to develop my professional portfolio through reflective blogs, multimedia resources, resumes and documents that I have created or are of a great resource. Through the continual building up of my professional dialogue and experiences I am able to reflect upon my learning journey as a lifelong learning. Through networking with other professions like myself, I am able to draw from their experience and shed light on my own learnings as “Mahara is designed to provide users with the tools to create a personal and professional learning and development environment” (Mahara, 2009).
Mahara might be better used in the upper years, as the learners are more independent and can continually update and upload their reflective learning and developing pieces of work. If used in the early years, it would be my responsibility as a Learning Manager to continually help learners upload their learning achievements. I would also up load to a generic site in Mahara the classroom objectives from behaviour to formative and summative assessments. This enables parents to see what their child is learning and the behavioural expectations that are enforced during their days. This creates a synchronised community between the parents and learning managers, as the parents are about to build more educational bridges into their child’s life as they never have to except a non responsive answer when asked about their day. Instead the parent s are about to access their accounts and develop dialogue, past experience, knowledge and understanding of the current topics. The learners then can enter the classroom with a fresh new experience and understanding, bringing a large range of diversity to each room.
Until my next learning journey
Mahara. (2009). About Us. Accessed July 21, 2009, from: http://cqu-mahara.netspot.com.au/about.php
Wikipedia. (2009). E-Portfolio. Retrieved July 25, 2009, from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eportfolio