Website Wednesday: Using the Web to Create Student Portfolios or Digital Notebooks

by Kristie Burk

A digital notebook or portfolio is a place where students can collect essays, artwork, drawings, projects, etc.  It’s a way for students (and teachers and parents) to see what they’ve learned and how they’ve progressed.  At the end of the year, the students can select their best pieces to be graded or presented.

With today’s technology, students can create their own digital portfolios for free using tools like Evernote.  (Teachers should also consider creating their own personal portfolios of what they’re doing in the classroom.)  Here are a few tips to keep in mind if you’re considering using digital portfolios with your students:

  • Make sure the portfolio is web-based.  Even if the students are 1:1, parents could try to view the portfolio from a different device.
  • Teach students how to create their portfolios in the beginning.
  • “Catch” the students doing good work (take a picture?) and put the documentation in their portfolios.
  • Provide plenty of opportunities for students to add to their portfolio.
  • Make the portfolios as multi-media as possible.
  • Build in time for students to review and reflect on their portfolios.
  • Share the portfolios with parents and classmates.

Schoology, our learning management system, makes it easy for students to create media albums and to use them as digital portfolios. It’s also in the process of creating a separate student portfolio section that students can use to show at job or college interviews.  Until this functionality is available, however, here are some additional resources to get you started:

How and Why It’s Time to Create Digital Student Portfolios

How To Create  a Portfolio with Evernote

7 Great iPad Apps to Create Digital Portfolios

Using e-portfolios in the Classroom

PortfolioGen Classroom – A Digital Portfolio Tool for Students and Teachers

Student Portfolios with Evernote

7 Ways to Create e-portfolios

Create Digital Portfolios on eduClipper

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