During the summer of 2015, the Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center team worked collaboratively with many faculty and staff to prepare for the Fall 2015 implementation of the new Blackboard Portfolio tool. Blackboard portfolios were created in a variety of courses including UNIV 101 and First Year Composition courses, as well as other undergraduate and graduate level courses and programs.
The easy-to-use portfolio tool allows students and faculty to create several portfolios for different purposes. For example, portfolios may be created for a specific course, program of study, or job search. Faculty can request templates to serve as a guide for students and grade the portfolio assignment in the Blackboard Grade Center. Students can upload completed assignments, projects from co-curricular activities, and career information using the portfolio tool. Students can then share their portfolio by submitting it to a course or via email to NIU users or non-NIU contacts with only an email address.
NIU faculty who have used the Blackboard Portfolio tool found it beneficial for their students. Some of the comments from faculty include:
It was easy to set-up.
The portfolio gave me (as instructor) far deeper insights…what really had an impact on their learning and how beneficial different teaching strategies or activities were from the students’ perspective.
For the students, I believe this portfolio really helped them explore and recognize everything that they accomplished in a very short time frame.
The portfolio also helped the students reflect on what type of learner they are…and how to adjust their approach to their own education and learning in the future.
It is so important to have all of the resources…in one place and this functionality in Blackboard made it especially convenient.
Students were able to include a variety of media (ppt, animation, audio, documents, links, etc.).
I was able to create a checklist/rubric to go along with the portfolio assignment, which made grading painless.
I was very pleased with the pilot of the e-portfolio. I would like to experiment with setting up an e-portfolio for another class I am teaching this semester.
We have extensive information and tutorials on using the Blackboard Portfolio tools at go.niu.edu/portfolios, including tutorials specifically for faculty and students to help you get started using Blackboard Portfolios. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on using the Blackboard Portfolio for your course or departmental ePortfolios!