Digital Writing, Rhetoric & Discourse Rotating Header Image

e-Portfolio Classroom Planning


  • Reflection (meta-awareness, critical thinking) should be a regular and integral component of the FYW classroom. (FYW Handbook, p. 15)
  • An e-portfolio isn’t just a place or a container; it’s a practice.
  • If students have a genuine measure of agency and ownership in the rhetorical design of their e-portfolios, they will commit more time, creativity, expertise, and care in presentation and delivery
  • Meta-cognitive work allows students to ask questions–“Who am I becoming? What and how am I learning? What are my strengths, values and capacities?”– in which students monitor their own understanding and because it “can enhance student achievement and develop in students the ability to learn independently.” [Peer Review, Winter 2009]

Week One: Introduce the concept of e-portfolios; encourage the relentless collecting and organizing of course materials: notes, drafts, feedback, revisions, class discussion and office-hour notes; encourage an ongoing and iterative process of collecting and reflecting as an additional strategy for backing up and archiving one’s work.
Background reading from Reynolds’s and Rice’s Portfolio Keeping: A Guide for Students:
“Setting Goals and Planning Ahead” (pp. 8-11) and “Staying Organized” (11-16).

Week Three: Introduce e-portfolio platforms and options as an overview activity; point out how collecting, selecting, and reflecting are made visible in e-portfolio examples
Background reading: Portfolio Keeping: “Becoming a Reflective Learner” (17-22).

Week Four: e-portfolio workshop; introduction to e-portfolio scoring guide; discussion of design and usability

Week Five: Mid-term e-portfolio with reflection can be used to prepare for a more fully developed end-of-term e-portfolio and can serve your mid-term collection and reflection needs
Background reading: Portfolio Keeping: “Mid-term assessments” and “Taking Stock” (23-27).

Week Seven: During one-on-one student conferences, include time for concerns about upcoming, end-of-term e-portfolios.
Background reading: Portfolio Keeping: “Preparing to Write the Introduction and Other Reflective Components” (48-52).

Week Nine: Provide in-class time to work on e-portfolios
Background reading: Portfolio Keeping: “From Process to Product” (32-39), “Putting it Together” (40-47), and storyboarding.

Week Ten: Provide in-class peer-review time, especially for proofreading; discuss file-transfer issues and backing up one’s work.
Background reading: Portfolio Keeping: “The Final Stages: Revising, Editing, and Proofreading” (53-57).

Finals Week Technical Issues:

  • Students working in iWeb can transfer their local files in a folder via flash drive or CD-ROM
  • Students working in Acrobat can submit their PDF file via flash drive or CD-ROM; emailing the PDF file works, too, but if the Acrobat file is media-rich (video, audio), the file size may be too big for emailing
  • Students working on “live” web sites can email a URL or provide local files. Local files are recommended when possible, however: should the student delete her web site later, creating a dead URL, you will still have access to the e-portfolio via her local files.