In our final pilot phase in the Spring Quarter 2011, we turned from survey and workshop data collection to invite instructors, students, and Writing Center colleagues to share their experiences and advice as we look forward to full program-wide digital portfolio implementation in the Autumn Quarter 2011 -- 75 faculty members and 3000 students!
Third & Final Pilot Phase Lessons Learned:
- Digital portfolios need to be integrated pedagogically in courses and not treated as an add-on, or as an afterthought. Class time has to be spent introducing both the meta-awareness capabilities — and other possible outcomes, depending on instructors’ pedagogical emphases — afforded by portfolios and the actual platform.
- Confirm early in the course that the WRD Digital Portfolio assignment is linked to your course, under Courses > Assignments
- Encourage students to use the mid-term portfolio submission link as a way to practice submitting the final, even if you don’t require a mid-term portfolio. (Recall that the optional mid-term assignment default setting allows students to submit multiples times.)
- Meet with your class during the scheduled final-exam period to accept submitted portfolios and to problem-solve any submission issues that may arise. In First Year Writing, we are required to meet with our courses during our scheduled Final Exam meeting time. Depending on your pedagogical emphases, you could use this time for presentations, or a portfolio-proofreading workshop, or portfolio submission-success activities, or some combination of these. Instructors are not allowed to require the submission of final portfolios prior to your scheduled Final Exam meeting times.