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SmartClassroom :: Wednesday, December 6, 2006


What Is the Purpose of an Electronic Portfolio? Is the Answer the Key to Your Successful Implementation?

By Margaret Price, Spelman College

Editor’s comment: Among many themes, Margaret Price explores the theme of purpose in her Viewpoint. One purpose of ePortfolio is to reflect on change from a beginning to a later point in time. In a future Viewpoint, Margaret will return to the SpEl.Folio and we’ll see how her thinking and her project have evolved.

As the director of Spelman’s newly-instituted Electronic Portfolio Project (SpEl.Folio), I’ve come to realize that a central question of our project is, “What is an electronic portfolio?” Is it a medium? Is it a genre, or a set of genres? Is it a delivery system? Is it an assessment tool? Is it a means to reflection and learning? Is it a savvy career move? Is it a flashy new container for the work students already are doing? Is it a pain in the butt?

Readers of SmartClassroom have thought about these questions, and probably have well-developed responses to them. But the audience that concerns me most is the students and teachers at Spelman, a historically black liberal-arts college for women. They sometimes seem to view the electronic portfolio as a flashy container and/or pain in the butt. It’s this audience, and the perceptions they ultimately form, on which the success of Spelman’s project relies. And, as frustrated as I might get when explaining for the hundredth time that an eFolio is not simply in Kathleen Yancey’s memorable phrase “print uploaded,” I must pay attention to these responses. For, if the users and authors of SpEl.Folio view it merely as a flashy container or pain in the butt (or both), that’s exactly what it will be...

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News & Product Updates

Call for Entries

Good news for schools in need of high-end projection capability...

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The Wisdom of Crowds

“We Are Smarter Than Me” is an interesting collaboration among MIT, the Wharton School, and Pearson Publishing...

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Survey Examines Student Engagement

The “2006 National Survey of Student Engagement” (NSSE) has been released...

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Case Study

Teaching Sustainable Community Development Online

By Penny Ralston-Berg, University of Wisconsin, Learning Innovations, and Kelly Cain, University of Wisconsin, River Falls

What d'es wildlife viewing have in common with online learning? Nothing at first thought; they seem to be unrelated, almost contradictory. That was my concern when Dr. Kelly Cain, a University of Wisconsin – River Falls (UWRF) professor known for innovation, approached me in 2004. As an instructional designer, I had had some peculiar requests, but this one topped them all – to build an online program in sustainable community development focused on wildlife recreation and nature tourism.

The Wildlife Recreation and Nature Tourism (WRNT) Graduate Certificate program is a track within the Sustainable Community Development (SCD) online Masters Program offered through the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences at UWRF. The program is the first of its kind to be offered in the United States...

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Tech Notes

101 Best Practices: Smart Classroom

Edited By Rhea Kelly

What makes a classroom “smart”? Presentation technologies such as projectors, document cameras, and LCD panels clearly fit the bill, but when you consider other technologies for teaching, learning, and developing content, the possibilities become limited only by the boundaries of an institution’s innovation.

In this opening section of our special 101 Best Practices guide, you’ll find out how colleges and universities are bringing new kinds of learning into the classroom, from the nuts and bolts of hardware configurations, to technologies that are engaging students in novel ways. Use the links provided to find more in-depth information in original articles and newsletters, and on vendor Web sites. These 32 “smart” ideas just might be the inspiration you need to get your own smart classroom initiatives off the ground. Read on!... (Campus Technology)

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Reader Response

We want to hear from you!

What d'es "smart" classroom technology mean to your campus? Share your viewpoint, experiences, and questions with your peers by writing to us at [email protected].

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