Q: Is the ePortfolio required? A: Yes, it is a course-level requirement in all General Education courses, but it is not a General Education graduation requirement. Think of it as an assignment that is common to all General Education courses. Build the ePortfolio outline once, and use it for all of your General Education courses. Please note that an increasing number of academic programs outside of General Education are requiring the ePortfolio for graduation.
Q: What if I’m concerned about my privacy? A: There is little to worry about here, because you can either hide your ePortfolio from search engines or password protect pages within it. You own your ePortfolio, so you determine the visibility of your ePortfolio. Some tips:
Share your ePortfolio’s URL only with SLCC faculty and staff via MyPage, as well as family, trusted friends, and scholarship committees. Otherwise, keep the address to yourself.
When you sign up for your ePortfolio, don’t use your name in the domain name, so an address like www.kb345.weebly.com is far better than www.katyburklie.weebly.com.
Similarly, don’t title the ePortfolio heading with “Katy Burklie’s SLCC ePortfolio,” as that will make it easier to find on a web search.
In Weebly and WordPress, you can use the site settings to make your ePortfolio invisible to search engines.
Use only your first name throughout the portfolio--on assignments, on the Welcome page, and on your resume.
Don’t put pictures of yourself in the portfolio.
Don't put your S Number, SSN, Address, and/or phone number anywhere in your ePortfolio. On your "Resume" page, your email address is sufficient contact information. If you are uncomfortable with putting your resume in the ePortfolio, then create a "contact me" page.
Finally, Weebly, and WordPress allow you to hide your site from search engines, allowing only those with the URL to see it.
Q: Are there campus resources to help me construct my ePortfolio? A: Yes! Please visit our labs for assistance with your ePortfolio.
Q: What platform should I use to build my ePortfolio? A: Starting Fall 2016, all students will be using Digication to build their ePortfolios. We will no longer build new ePortfolios on Weebly, Wix, Jimdo, Yola, Google Sites, or WordPress, but assistance is still available for those who have already built their ePortfolios on these platforms. Students who have built their ePortfolio on platforms other than Digication are welcome to move their ePortfolio to Digication or keep their current account. Please use Digication to create your new ePortfolio.See the "Tutorials" page or the "Lab Information" page for details more assistance.
NOTE: SLCC does not endorse these particular sites, nor is the College responsible if you have a bad experience with one of them.
Q: Will my instructor teach me how to build an ePortfolio? A: No. Instructors are busy teaching you complicated subjects in one semester, so they cannot dedicate class time to help you build your ePortfolio. Because students have a choice of ePortfolio platforms to use, faculty cannot be expected to be knowledgeable enough in all of them to help you. Besides, ePortfolio specialists are prepared to help you. Don’t worry, these sites are pretty easy to use.
Q: Can I build my ePortfolio on Canvas? A: No. DO NOT use theCanvas ePortfolio tool. Use one of SLCC's supported platforms (see the info in the "Online Help Sites" section below for details on supported platforms).
Q: Does this result in more work for students? A: The truth is that SLCC’s ePortfolio initiative results in a little more work for students. Students will need to build the ePortfolio outline once, and then use it in all their General Education courses. Students put one or more assignments from each class into their ePortfolio along with a couple of paragraphs of reflective writing. It takes less than 15 minutes to add a page to your portfolio, upload your assignments, and paste in your reflection.
Q: What is a signature assignment? A: Your instructors in General Education courses will tell you which signature assignmentswill result in artifacts that you can put in your ePortfolio. You can put many different kinds of digital artifacts in your ePortfolio, including text files, images, audio, video, and links to webpages. Something to remember: convert as many of your files to pdf as you can, because they end up being smaller files and they open quickly.
Q: What is a reflection? A: Reflection can be described in various ways: musing, self- evaluation, metacognition, meditation, contemplation, consideration, rumination, etc. Intentional reflection can take on many forms: memoirs, personal essays, reflection essays, video diaries, documentaries, lab reports, research journals, etc. Regardless of the name or form, reflection requires the thinker/writer/creator to think critically about learning and connections they make among experiences. It involves discovery: what is known (knowledge) and unknown (perplexity)? John Dewey and other educational theorists argue that inquiry and connection making are the foundations of meaningful reflection.
Q: What is the grade-weight of the ePortfolio requirement in each General Education course? A: Each instructor determines how much the ePortfolio assignment and reflection counts toward your total grade in a given course. It may be as low as 1% of your grade up to 40% or even more.
Q: I notice that many sites have a “pro” version that costs money. Do I have to purchase it? A: No. You can build an excellent ePortfolio using any of the platforms without upgrading to the “pro” version. The pro versions are usually reasonably priced, and get you increased capabilities and features, such as password protection.
Q: Can I put assignments or other material in the ePortfolio that are not mine? A: Absolutely not. Plagiarism is a violation of the Student Code of Conduct and will be taken very seriously. You should know that the College subscribes to anti-plagiarism software that faculty use to compare current digital artifacts with those appearing anywhere else on the Web. Also note that using copyrighted or trade-marked materials is a violation of the law. If you do not know if it is okay to use something (such as an image) check this chart or refer to this booklet on Fair Use. If you use an image from Google images, after doing your search, make sure you select "tools" and then "usage rights". Then choose images that are approved under either "labeled for reuse" or "labeled for non-commercial reuse".
Q: How much personal information should I put in my ePortfolio? A: Only as much as you feel comfortable sharing. This is suppose to be a public representation of your learning, but you certainly don’t have to put your photo, full name, address, email address, or other information in the portfolio if you don’t want to. You’ll have to decide how best to balance your privacy concerns with the desire to use the ePortfolio to showcase your educational aspirations and accomplishments. The primary audiences for your ePortfolio should be your instructors, your family, and possibly scholarship committees. Depending on the platform you choose, you will be able to either hide your ePortfolio from Web searches, or password protect key pages within it.
Q: Who owns the ePortfolio when I’m finished at SLCC? A: Each student owns his or her ePortfolio and can continue to use it after leaving SLCC. If you transfer to a four-year college or university, our advice to you is to keep using it to document your learning--regardless of whether your new professors know anything about it. When you get into your major at the four-year college or university, use that section of the Coursework page to document your learning. That way, you’ll be able to chart your progress through from SLCC all the way to achieving your Bachelor’s degree. Once you graduate, transfer to another institution, or leave Salt Lake Community College for other reasons, your ePortfolio is no longer affiliated with Salt Lake Community College.
Q: What if one of these sites loses my data? A: SLCC cannot be responsible for the performance of these third-party sites. The situation is analogous to your instructor requiring you to create a spreadsheet on your computer. If your spreadsheet program eats your data, the manufacturer of the software is responsible rather than the College. For this reason we highly recommend that you keep a digital copy of the work you put in your ePortfolio as well as a copy of other work you do at SLCC. Invest in a thumb or jump drive to store your coursework.
Q: May I be excused from the ePortfolio requirement? A: No. However, if you have severe concerns about the ePortfolio, you can petition Emily.Dibble@slcc.edu (Emily dot Dibble at SLCC dot edu) for a waiver that will allow you to make an offline ePortfolio that follows the outline on page 4 of this handbook. If you are granted a waiver, you will be given instructions on several possible ways to make an offline ePortfolio. You must present your offline electronic portfolio to all of your Gen Ed instructors who ask for it. Q: What are Learning Outcomes? A: The Learning Outcomes are essential capacities that all students should possess regardless of academic major or career plans, for they will serve you well in all aspects of your life. When you put assignments and reflection in the course pages of your ePortfolio, revisit your Goals and Outcomes page and create links from the Learning Outcomes to the work in your courses. See the examples for ideas. Remember that as you take a variety of General Education courses, your professors are engaged in a collective effort to help you achieve these learning outcomes.
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