Loyola University Chicago has recently adopted a new enterprise ePortfolio system called LAT (Learning Achievement Tools) from TaskStream. An ePortfolio (electronic portfolio) is an electronic collection of student work over time through a broad range of evidence of learning. An ePortfolio may include submitted course papers and projects in a variety of formats, independent research projects, reflections on assignments, media in a variety of formats and links to relevant resources. An ePortfolio may function as a venue for collecting and sharing academic work with faculty members, a tool for inviting collaboration and feedback, a professional portfolio to share with prospective employers or a private log of academic progress.
Types of ePortfolios:
Archive/Comprehensive: Created primarily for the for the ePortfolio owner’s reference as a way to store work in a central space and organize or reflect on experiences. This can include work from personal, professional, and academic dimensions of one’s life and can serve as a holistic space for reflection and meaning-making in addition to archiving and storage.
Course/Learning: Created by a student as part of an academic course as a way to store and share assignments for evaluation and receive feedback from an instructor.
Assessment: Created by a student or program/department to demonstrate competencies and skills gained in well-defined areas over the course of a series of academic requirements. The primary purpose is to evaluate competency as defined by program standards and outcomes.
Professional/Showcase: Created with the explicit goal of sharing with professional colleagues or prospective employers in the interview or hiring process.
ePortfolio Artifacts: What to Include
ePortfolios can include any combination of the following "artifacts" or documents and files to demonstrate evidence of learning, skills, abilities, experiences, and accomplishments. Creativity is also invited and encouraged when selecting artifacts: If you have an idea for an artifact that is not displayed below, you can include it as long as it effectively and authentically exhibits what you are trying to convey in your ePortfolio.
ePortfolios for Students
ePortfolios can be a powerful catalyst for integrative learning and holistic development as well as a tool for self-branding and professional development. ePortfolios can:
- Encourage engagement in active reflection and meaning-making
- Foster reflection on the principles central to an academic discipline and the university as a whole
- Facilitate the integration of topics and themes across disciplines and over time
- Provide a forum to synthesize work and share that work with others
- Contribute to holistic development in multiple ways, including: personal development, academic development, and career development
- Provide a resource for demonstrating skills, abilities, and experiences in the job-search process
ePortfolios for Faculty/Staff
ePortfolios can foster and provide evidence of student learning across all curricular, co-curricular, and institution-wide outcomes. ePortfolios enhance learning and provide opportunities for assessment of learning in the following ways:
- Represent multiple learning styles, modes of accomplishment, and quality of work accomplished by students
- Provide structure around clear expectations and articulated goals
- Offer the potential for progressive formative assessments that foster improvement while learning is still in process
- Encourage reflection on learning as well as personal goal-setting and future planning
- Facilitate program and institutional review through sampling and aggregation of data from individual student portfolios [Adapted from www.aacu.org/value]
ePortfolios for Assessment
ePortfolios can be a powerful tool for assessment and evaluation. By establishing a set of criteria and evidence each student is required to submit, a department can measure what concepts students have mastered and where they are falling short of departmental standards. ePortfolios can be used as formative assessment (throughout a student’s course of study) and a summative evaluation (at the end of the standard degree program).
ePortfolio assessment has additional advantages over other modes of evaluation in that students often have the opportunity to select what they feel is their best representative work. With the ability to include multiple formats, including multimedia, ePortfolios address multiple learning styles and provide a medium in which students can get instructive feedback that informs them of their strengths and deficits; this feedback can be based on an established measure, called a rubric, that provides specific information on a student’s performance. One frequent ePortfolio assignment involves having students reflect on their learning, on their co-curricular activities and other events that impact their experience in their discipline, the university community and the world.
For more information and support on how to use ePortfolio technology for program-wide assessment of learning outcomes and standards, contact the Faculty Center for Ignatian Pedagogy.