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Exemplar of use 7 - Thanet

Page history last edited by Jacquie Kelly 9 years, 1 month ago


An overview of use


Exemplar 7:  In-folio


Institution: Thanet College


e-Portfolio context:  


Dates of provision: 


Reason for implementation: Having accepted that there are different portfolios for different learning experiences we wanted to use a portfolio that allowed less direct management by the learner where the learner has learning difficulties. Initially the In-folio tool was too basic to be fully employed but was worthy of exploration as a 'tool in development'. 


Purpose/s: This is an inclusion issue and we also wanted students who have limited ability to use keyboards to have another way of interacting with technology and collecting their own story of learning. In-folio is an image and sound file based portfolio that allows others to add to the pages, removing much of the privacy aspect. This is traded off against the ability of the student to see what they have achieved in sound and image as a means of reinforcing progress to the student, as well as showing skills to a wider audience. 

Learning processes involved:  We wanted students with learning difficulties to be involved in our college experiment. We hope that portfolios become a mechanism for reinforcement for students for their identity and to support a sense of achievement. Our inclusive nature as teachers highlighted a group of students who were not able to take part in the exploration of personal learning space. 


Practice: (fully developed) Arrested.

Key staff involved: e-learning manager, Tutors from the section involved. Guest Server administration.

Both tutors left the college and the In-folio sat on a server to which we had limited access. A plan to move to a shared server at a local college did not allow external connection. Consequently, beyond initial investigation and discussion concerning use, the work stalled.


The reason for including this story is that change is very dependent on enthusiastic teachers to drive the programme and, with no budget in the College for e-learning, finding ways of experimenting with technology is challenging. 


Sadly this was one experiment that ran out of people to make it happen, further hampered by the lack of a suitable server. The students were not able to provide any contribution to the work due to lack of teacher support.


From our investigation we saw that the use of sound and image files are a perfectly good way to show competence in action and to show the capabilities of the students. For students unable to use a keyboard, technology does allow access to the learning journey process that would previously have been closed. The option to reflect is limited but using portfolios in this way clearly has benefits for the students themselves as well as their wider community and potential employers.


It is unusual to include an exemplar of a project that was stopped, however, it is important to share the lessons learned and is an exemplar learning experience:

  1. That portfolio implementation must be understood and supported by the teachers who plan to use it in the re-designed curriculum with students.
  2. That sound and image files can predominate in a portfolio as a means of inclusion.
  3. Where the portfolios sit and access to the server and those that run it are an important part of the process.
  4. Students with learning difficulties can benefit from portfolios but need much more help and support in producing productive and worthwhile portfolios. 
  5. Even without reflection, a portfolio can still perform a role of showcasing ability and personality.


Link to the In-Folio website In-Folio  


Link to the JISC TechDis website  http://www.jisctechdis.ac.uk/techdis/keyinitiatives/organisationaleffectiveness/enablingtechnology/infolio



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