As an emerging alternative to the First Year Writing Program's Learning-Outcomes based writing portfolio, several instructors have been working with a curated model of portfolio development:
- As an alternative to a 750-1250 word reflective essay, students reflect on examples of their work and processes via integrated annotations
- Students can still accomplish meta-awareness of their work and processes, and the curated method provides them with opportunities to organize and arrange their work differently than with an essay-anchored portfolio
- To help students develop a reader-based organizing principle -- the role that a reflective essay might otherwise play -- students can use their opening "cover" page to alert readers how the portfolio is arranged, and how readers might proceed through it.
WRD Curated Digital Portfolio
If you choose this option for composing and designing your portfolio, you can design sections and pages based on what you want to emphasize and showcase. And rather than accompany your work with a comprehensive essay, you can curate your work, as museums do when showcasing and contextualizing visual arts.
For example, you might present a series of assignments, early and final drafts, sample peer reviews, and other projects in a way that allows you to reflect on your experiences in this course, and that explains them to readers. You might use the following categories as headings to help demonstrate what you have learned. You could use these as subheads consistently in each section. Or you could use them as prompts to help you decide what to say in a curated comment:
- Introduction: a brief overview that includes the context and the goals of the assignment
- Significance: describe how the experience is relevant to the ‘big picture’ ‐ larger ideas, systems, institutions and/or events
- Skills gained: describe the type of work and what was learned at the time of the experience
- Lessons Learned: describe how the learning gained in the experience connects to other areas of your academic, professional, creative, or community life
Adapted from Melissa Peet: Integrative Knowledge Portfolio Process
— Here, the categories are integrated with an annotated draft:
— or as part of an extended annotation, without categories: