Thesis Proposal March 17, 1999 (One Page) : LUSENET : M.Ed./International Falls : One Thread

Research Project Proposal Patty Ross, Ladd Kocinski, and Tim Everson International Falls Cohort Wednesday March 17, 1999

Curriculum Development for Electronic Portfolios

We will be creating a curriculum for our research project. Our emphasis will focus on the creation of a student electronic portfolio. By definition, a digital or electronic portfolio is a purposeful collection of work, captured by electronic means, that serves as an exhibit of individual efforts, progress, and achievements in one or more areas. This curriculum will include Internet, word processor, spreadsheet, and database lesson plans which are skills needed to produce a quality electronic portfolio. We are choosing to use electronic portfolios as a method of assessment because they have been gaining popularity among both educators and business people alike as a way of evaluating an individuals performance.

Our review of literature has taken us in the direction of researching what an electronic portfolio is, why to use electronic portfolios, and how to create electronic portfolios. We will summarize our findings and suggest possible enhancements that could be made.

What is an electronic portfolio?

Electronic portfolios are selections and purposeful collections of students work which will include the students reflections on their own work. These portfolios will also serve as records of learning, growth, and change by meaningfully documenting the students abilities. The electronic portfolio differs from a paper portfolio in the sense that multimedia can be included. This means that a student can include audio and video clips of projects that they have worked on enabling them to explain in their own words what has been accomplished. These portfolios will also allow students to express themselves more creatively than they could have with a traditional paper portfolio.

Why use electronic portfolios?

Portfolios are becoming a favored method of assessment since it allows a person to exhibit what they can do. This means that work in a portfolio can constantly be improved as a persons ability level rises. Since the students will be creating a product that represents what they can do, they will be motivated to create quality work. Electronic portfolios exhibit benchmark performance by allowing students to view other portfolios. Since the portfolios are digital, upgrading is easy and encouraged. As mentioned above, electronic portfolios allow students to include multimedia presentations. These presentations will allow added creativity as well as the opportunity for the students to better explain their work.

Creating the electronic portfolio.

The concept and purpose of an electronic portfolio will be described in detail. The students will need to know that they will be responsible for selecting what pieces of work to include. It is vital that the work they include be the very best that they can do since this is what will be assessed. They also must be aware that updating their portfolio is encouraged. The students will also reflect by including strategies that they used to complete the various tasks. The assessment of the electronic portfolio will involve self assessment, peer assessment, and teacher assessment. As the students complete the Internet, word processing, spreadsheet, and database assignments, they will include selections of their work in their portfolios.

In summary, electronic portfolios are becoming required information when applying for entrance into post secondary educational institutes. Digital portfolios are also becoming essential tools to the person who is applying for jobs in the business community. Today there is software available to aid students in the creation of their electronic portfolios and there are companies that specialize in creating electronic portfolios for people in the business world. By learning how to create electronic portfolios in a very basic computer class, in this case Exploring Computers, the students will be able to put together an electronic portfolio that will include all the important projects that they complete during their high school years. By creating this portfolio and learning the basic techniques, they will be preparing for the business world that they will eventually be exposed to. Using technology as an alternative and more authentic methods of portfolio development will create many interesting challenges. Both the students and the teachers stand to gain as even more sophisticated technology becomes available.


Wiedmer, Terry L., April 1999, PHI DELTA KAPPAN, p 586

-- Anonymous, March 17, 1999


Hi Patty, I really enjoy my role as faculty coordinator advocating for, assisting and advising students in IFalls. You are a very positive group of people and Tim helped clear up some misunderstandings, so I am appreciative of that.

Terry has discussed with Tim the research aspect of your paper and is working on getting clarification so you can proceed. Your group is almost there with just a little fine tuning. So, hang in there and we will make sure you are clear and comfortable as you progress on your research project. We will talk on Wednesday, Mary Ann

-- Anonymous, March 21, 1999

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