Skip to main content

When is the implementation of an #ePortfolio and related practice achieved?

That's a very tough question to answer, it depends on how an organisation or project plans defines success. Having led the implementation at the University of Canberra since Jan 2011 from 800 accounts to over 12,000 I believe our own implementation is far from over, but it has reached a critical mass and the growth trend is unlikely to reverse. This for me is an important milestone and a measure of success. It takes a lot of effort, conversations and demonstrations to get this far. An important factor is the degree to which you can sign up early adopters, their examples will be a determiner of success, many people need to see what you are talking about.

Growth in practice

While presenting on the use and value of Mahara, Di, convener of the 2014 common first year unit, added that she had been invited by the Dean of Health to join their Mahara ePortfolio community (Health precinct). Health uses Mahara for discussions in forums, share documents, and create resources for staff. In return Di is going to show the Dean of Health the work her students are producing in her Creativity unit as well as what they are doing in the CFYU. There are many other examples of inter-faculty conversations sparked by the ePortfolio practice. This is significant, and although not the first I have heard of this, it shows that the ePortfolios have made a significant enough impact on the work people work that these outcomes are valuable enough to promote and share. A measure of success is when adopters of change become advocates.

Support is improving

Today there are many people at UC who are experts in ePortfolio practice and Mahara. When I offered to take up the role Leonard left open in 2011 I didn't have any other support, and so attend every conference and forum I could to come up to speed. Now a number of us can deliver ePortfolio/Mahara workshops. We talk about things like professional identity, linked-in, Mahara as a UC community environment. Another measure of success is when support requirements outpace the support you start with, and when your future support strategy is co-created with others in the organisation.

My changing role

My role over the last few years has consisted of the following, with prediction of how they will change:

  • Mahara administrator (less, as the Moodle admin becomes more familiar)
  • Bug/wishlist reporter (same, though I anticipate others at UC will join in the reporting role)
  • Strategy developer (same, my colleague Alan Arnold and I have largely done this together in the past. Strategies that incorporate ePortfolios are now appearing in many places and we continue to have input to many.)
  • Community member (broader ePortfolio community in Australia and beyond) (increasing)
  • Learning/curriculum Designer (increasing)
  • Support/helpdesk (email, phone, at-elbow, in-unit) (less, the level of knowledge in the UC community is growing all the time, lowering the demand on central support, while our online self help support also matures.)
  • Support: Development of self help resources: eg
  • Salesperson/evangelist for ePortfolio practice (same, I like this role and will continue to advocate ePortfolio practice)

The context of a small university in a highly resource constrained environment resulted in me having to handle all these aspects, it would not have been possible without my colleagues Alan, Shad, and to all of my academic colleagues (especially the early adopters) who have been my extended team for this project.


Popular posts from this blog

What does 2021 hold for student #learningexperience at my university

"Handwriting Text E-Learning Loading. Concept meaning Forecasting the future event"   by  is licensed under  CC BY 2.0 This year we have a unique opportunity to capitalise on what was 2020 and all the impacts it had on learning and teaching.  Staff ICT literacy levels and confidence increased because they had to use digital tools for teaching, there was no choice. This situation was complicated, academics of all levels of ICT literacy had to adapt. Some staff had zero experience with digital tools and were using online tools for the first time, while others are always pushing boundaries and looking for alternative tools available from central support areas. As with staff, some students have very low ICT literacy, while others blaze ahead of the curve, using the tools like pros and needing much instruction. They just work it out. Shifting this cohort of students and staff to fully online was a massive undertaking and a huge shock for everyone.  Going into 2020

University of Canberra Library adds #VR Headsets to the catalogue - on the road to immersive learning resources in #Education

In September 2018 the UC Library added VR headsets to the catalogue, available in the short loan section. Students can loan the headsets for up to 3 hours. Support for using the headsets will be limited to basic guidance, and beyond this it will be up to students to have their apps and content ready, just needing the headset to get going. Supporting this technology is difficult given the number of different phones, OS versions and apps out there giving rise to any app recommendations working on one phone and not another. For this reason support will be limited, however as our in-house knowledge grows more advice will be able to be given. A small number of headsets to start with represents a low risk investment that also allows staff to up skill in VR technology. Demo sessions and training given to Library staff has been fun and a valuable sharing activity as everyone is at different stages of familiarity. Now that a number of staff in the library have been up skilled we can begin t

Conference Notes: ACODEs AR + VR + MR (XR) = #anewreality #acodenews

#aNewReality Workshop @ Griffith University Griffith University held a 2 day Immersive Learning event where those Colleagues who manage emerging technologies, and leading practitioners from across the Australasian Landscape shared their experiences, both at an Institutional and ‘on the ground’ development levels. Some of the questions UC went in asking: What are other Higher Education Institutions are doing around Immersive Learning and Emerging Technologies?  How is XR being used to increase student engagement, retention, and learning? How does XR support online students to feel more connected and situated? What strategies and technologies are a good fit for UniCanberra? Which approaches are not only educationally effective but also scale in terms of adoption and supportable, and are equitable? How much physical investment is needed to create various content in-house, what kind of content can be created using different technologies, and what ongoing support/