Documenting Life-Long Learning
Ongoing reflection is essential for the development of personal growth. It is the habits of reflection that must be consistently developed in order to become ingrained behavior. Electronic Portfolio assessments provide an effective means for encouraging growth through reflection. In addition to providing a method for students to track their own learning growth, the e-Portfolio provides an opportunity for students to develop a beneficial reference and resource guide as they continue to grow as learners and leaders.
Electronic portfolio assessment, as opposed to traditional methods of assesment, focuses on development and growth over time. This is done through the careful selection, inspection, and reflection of work over time. This is then followed with ongoing goal-setting and self-evaluation. The collected pieces of work serve as artifacts, or evidence of learning and achievement.
The benefits of e-Portfolios are invaluable. E-Portfolios build and develop technological and multimedia skills, which is a necessary skill as we progress in the 21st Century and enter the world of Web 2.0. In addition, the stages of the e-portfolio develoment contribute to life-long learning. For example, through the collection, selection, reflection, projection, and presentation of collected work, students benefit most from demonstrating and showcasing the results of learning over time.
Another benefit of e-portfolios is they serve as a digital archive of collected work. They hold up very little physical space, yet can contain an abundance of material and can be enhanced with the addition of photographs, music, and personal interests, making it a highly personal achievements and accomplishments. E-portfolios are easily accesible forms of assessment.
Exposure to e-portfolios and its processes has really broadened my philosophy on forms of assessments. My experience with e-portfolios has impacted my belief system positively. I feel that one of the most powerfuil driving forces of e-portfolios is its reflection component. Through the art of reflection, I am given the chance to pay close, direct attention to past experiences and explore the concepts, skills, meaning and values of the experience in greater depth. Successful reflection enables personal growth through self-awareness and evaluation, and in turn promotes professional growth. Having the opportunity to reflect on experiences and outcomes has led to a great deal of personal insight and meaning.
As a result of the positive impact e-portfolios had on me, I decided to develop, create, and implement my Educational Improvement Plan around the power of e-portfolios for students. Beginning in September 2010, all atudents at the Rosemarie Ann Siragusa IBPYP School will utilize e-portfolios as a way collect, highlight, and showcase student work and provide students with the opportunity to self-reflect on experiences and set personal goals. In addition, the teachers will utilize the student portfolios to show student growth over time.