Alan writes about a “breakthrough” at his community college consortium that combines e-portfolios and RSS feeds. As Alan says:
This is just out of the chute, and there are some more features coming iin the next few weeks. But consider what a tool RSS can provide to teachers, advisors, etc to be able to use a RSS reader to check on the status of a group of students’ portfolios.
Now I’ve been thinking for a long time about using Weblogs as e-portfolios, and I know that Manila can spit out an RSS feed for news items when they are posted, but this seems like another step toward what Tom’s been referring to as a “Webloggy Website for Schools.” As this article out of Berkeley articulates, the potentials for e-ports on student learning are pretty extensive:
The ePortfolio has, in turn, come to be seen as a major tool in the pedagogy of student-centered learning and student-directed development; and, as a way for students to piece the fragmented nature of their varied activities and courses into a trajectory of their educational and professional development.
The RSS feed is a key, though, because this new type of e-portfolio would be able to seamlessly update any number of people when new artifacts have been posted, and in doing so could facilitate feedback and participation from a variety of mentors or guides. Makes me want once again to offer up a program by which students can gain credit by maintaining a reflective Weblog that archives artifacts from across the curriculum and asks them to select a number of them at the end of the year and do some real metacognitive posting about their learning as a whole, all along interacting with key responders that would help guide the student to that more global (as opposed to fragmented) understanding. That would just be too cool.
UPDATE: A related link for future thinking.