The Creation Of E-Portfolio As A Part Of English Lessons At The University

The present article is devoted to the description of different methods how to use E-portfolio in the process of teaching English.

The use of E-Portfolio is an effective tool for developing students’ professional skills that can be necessary in their future career. There are two key questions that should be taken into account:

1. What is a Personal and Career Portfolio and what is the difference of a Portfolio from a Résumé?

2. What are the Steps to Developing a Personal and Career Portfolio?

A Personal and Career Portfolio is a logical and structured collection of evidence that has an aim to present your accomplishments. A portfolio contains samples of students’ work that exhibit and reveal the quality and variety of their learning, their skills, and their experiences.

Students should also understand the aim of a portfolio. Several ways of practicing portfolios can be pointed out. First, it can be used as the final task after the course is over, or is it just a simulation of a process and the portfolio is not expected to be added to or used after the course. It should be emphasized that a portfolio can be a personal marketing tool in their future career. In this case a teacher can practice using a task of creation E-portfolios as a part of Business English, for example.

Before creating a portfolio by students it’s good to organize a brainstorming activity (for example, in the form of “mind maps”) and analyze in details different portfolios created by famous people (for example, how an artist wants to sell their paintings, how a writer presents his books or how a photographer shows his works).

A portfolio differs from a résumé in several ways:

We shouldn’t forget that a résumé is usually only 1 – 3 pages in length and is meant to summarize your accomplishments.

A portfolio usually contains many pages and is meant to show evidence of a wide variety of your accomplishments.

A résumé tells someone what you have accomplished.

A portfolio on the contrary shows someone what you have accomplished.

After discussing the problem of the difference between a portfolio and a résumé it’s necessary to analyze with the students the process of developing their personal and career portfolio.

These steps should include the following:

First, it’s necessary to gather information. Students can include in their portfolios evidence of their skills, their talents, their achievements, awards, experiences, as well as their learning and employability skills.

Items for a portfolio can include:

– report cards

– things you are proud of (newspaper clippings, certificates, awards, etc.)

– certificates of Participation (clubs, events, etc.)

– a record of their community involvement activities

– an updated résumé

To organize a portfolio

It’s essential to present the information students have in a correct and attractive way, to stress on those activities that can make a positive impression of them as future design portfolio employees.

Here it’s possible to point out several categories:

educational accomplishments;

school activities;

work;

community participation.

The best way to organize a portfolio is to use the ready-made web-platforms that are available in the Internet.

Teachers can suggest students to use the following platforms: Lead, Weebly, Wix, Portfoliogen etc. These platforms can be used for free and let create interesting portfolios. Some web-sites have the function of inserting a web-message or an audio-presentation.

The information gathered by students should be readable and understandable. Students shouldn’t forget to include a cover page with their names, the title of a portfolio. The use of photo is optional.

Before giving a link to a portfolio, students should answer the following questions:

Does your portfolio have the best examples of what you have accomplished?

Are the examples concise and to-the-point?

Have you edited your portfolio for clarity and for spelling and grammar?

Is the sequence and organization of your portfolio logical?

Does the format of your portfolio make it appealing and easy-to-read?

– Does the organization and presentation of your portfolio demonstrate that you would be an excellent person for an employer to hire?

The role of a teacher at the process of creating portfolios is very important because it’s necessary to assess E-portfolios at all stages. Different methods can be used for evaluation and one of them is to use rubrics and score students ‘portfolios according to:

Completeness;

Presentation of ideas;

Visual appeal;

Diversity and quality of selected evidence;

Appropriateness for the intended purpose of a portfolio;

Clarity of the message for the intended audience.

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