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Adapting the ePortfolio Mini Design Challenge for K-12

Design thinking workshops are a wonderful idea. After seeing what my colleagues, Danny and Matt, were doing I decided to developed one for the MoodlePosium in 2012 for designing ePortfolios (Derived from works by IDEO (2012) and Green & Bonollo (2002), Munnerley and Bacon (2012)). I have used this workshop design twice now here and here, and each time modifications have been required to suit the context. (See an alternative workshop approach here). Time constraints, audience, desired outcomes, etc, all influence the design of each session.

Generally though the key principles of the design challenge are retained. Key principles include:
  • Opportunity provided for ideation around purpose, audience, evidence, ethical considerations
  • Team approach to designing based on a theme (e.g. general purpose)
  • Feedback from others during the process (preferably people with experience)
  • Opportunity to prototype
  • Production of an outcome from the session (something to leave the session with)
This time the workshop is being run for K-12 teachers and principals. Doing this has meant changes to wording have changed the meaning to suit the audience.

This time my colleagues Dr Anita Collins,  Dr Misty Kirby, Dr Iain Hay and Dr Steve Shann, who will be running the workshop with me, have guided the modifications to suit the K-12 audience.

The modifications include:
  • Rather than groups moving to where the panel is, the panel moves between tables providing feedback during the feedback component.
  • Marketing and other terms are replaced with alternatives, such as "pitch your design" -> "communicate your design". 
  • Only one theme is being used due to the homogeneous nature of the audience in this workshop.
  • An hour is being dedicated to hands-on time with Mahara. The panel are also familiar with Mahara and can help people learn this system.
  • Majority felt that blind voting for the best design would not be needed.
Below are the hand-outs of the process. Feel free to explore the other design workshops linked to above.


GREEN, L. & BONOLLO, E. (2002) The Development of a Suite of Design Methods Appropriate for Teaching Product Design”. Global Journal of Eng. Education, Vol.6, No.1, Australia.

IDEO.  (2012).  Design Thinking Toolkit for Educators.  Retrieved from

Munnerley, D. & Bacon, M. (2012) AR Studio Project. Retrieved from


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