In the life of a teacher, time is of the essence. You work hard throughout the day, and even harder at night. However, sooner or later, you get that itch. You want to continue your education. So, you find a Masters program that fits your schedule, more than likely one that is online. You realize that you are adding to your already full plate, but recognize the importance of being a life-long learner.
Once you begin your courses, you realize that you are learning material at a very swift pace. How do you, with all of your other responsibilities, ensure that you are not simply receiving knowledge that will soon be forgotten? How do you make learning meaningful to you? The answer is through an ePortfolio.
Committing information to our long-term memory requires a few important steps. First, you must have made meaningful connections to the material. Next, you must feel emotionally invested in the concepts. Finally, you must have spent time reflecting upon the concepts presented and the knowledge you have acquired. An ePortfolio offers all of these opportunities. Learners are given the opportunity to reflect on the learning process over an expanded period of time. This allows learners to develop both skill and habits that are hallmarks of critical thinkers.
For students, ePortfolios offer a positive learning experience that improves confidence through self-reflection, allows them to develop their own authentic learning experiences where choice, voice, and ownership are central to achieving their goals. Additionally, it offers students an innovative way to showcase their accomplishments to potential employers and a way to document their commitment to life-long learning.
The benefits of an ePortfolio expand beyond the typical classroom setting; whether you are an educator, and employer, or a corporate company, an ePortfolio can have a positive effect on staff morale. Through the process of creation, people have the opportunity to reflect up their individual strengths and weaknesses, as well as reflect upon their current skills and ambitions. Employers are able to use ePortfolios to match individuals to jobs that complement their skill sets and passions, increasing the company climate, morale, and productivity. Finally, ePortfolios cultivate a spirit of collaboration and reflection, both of which are essential in growing and nurturing new ideas.
If you are anything like me, ePortfolios are not something that you may be familiar with. Creating something so personal may feel scary or uncomfortable. However, it is important to remember that living your best life involves stepping out of the box. With so many potential benefits, is it really worth burying your head in the sand? What are you waiting for? Google it! 🙂