Friday, February 5, 2010

2010 ePortfolio intersects with National and State goals

In late January and early February I had the pleasure of listening to two influential education leaders.

U.S. Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, spoke at the National School Boards Association, Federal Relations Network meeting in Washington DC on February 1, 2010. Copy is available at

And California State Superintendent of Instruction, Jack O’Connell delivered his 7th Annual State of Education Address on January 22, 2010. Copy is available at

There were many times during each presentation that I nodded and mumbled “ePortfolios”, restraining the urge to jump up and shout it out for all to hear. (Note: Jack O’Connell and Arne Duncan are not the same person.)

Jack O’Connell

“Students are now being prepared for college and careers by a new approach to high school that links strong academic focus with real world, work-based learning in a wide range of fields. Linked Learning is a promising high school improvement approach that is helping to give many students more options for life after graduation.”

ePortfolio intersect: Work-based certificates and documents can be housed within an ePortfolio system. Specific systems (such as Minnesota’s) can link to employment development databases to match qualifications applicants to open positions. Our current economy and the increased need to have multiple skills will require continued learning and documentation of that learning.

La Guardia
eFolio Minnesota

“Comprehensive research studies evaluating our education system have all come to the same conclusion, a conclusion that is simple and straightforward: we need to invest in an education for every student that prepares them for success in the 21st century global economy.”

ePortfolio intersect: The global economy will require flexibility and a vast array of skills and knowledge. Keeping a ‘treasure chest’ or history of learning that is easily accessed can allow for change and continued learning.

The JISC (from the UK)
New Zealand
Australian Flexible Learning Framework

Dr. Helen Barrett, a leader in the ePortfolio world, “ePortfolios, 21st Century Skills and ISTE Standards: Planning for Implementation”

"We are part of a consortium of states working to develop a new set of assessments aligned to the common core standards: assessments that ensure validity and reliability across the state, but use multiple measures to evaluate success. This is a tall task, but my friends, man landed on the moon more than 40 years ago. Surely we have the capability to figure out how to assess knowledge in a valid and reliable way beyond a single bubble-in test!”

ePortfolio intersect: Aligning standards and student learning outcomes is an ePortfolio benefit.

See presentation from Mary Bold, Ph.D., CFLE the Academic Program Review Director, and Lynnette Olson, Ed.D. , Project Director for Assessment & Effectiveness within the Office of the Chancellor and consultant/evaluator for WASC and the Higher Learning Commission/NCA at

Also, San Francisco State University’s presentation with Dr. Maggie Beers, Director of Academic Technology, Linda C. Buckley, Ph.D., Associate VP of Academic Planning and Educational Effectiveness at SFSU, and Gail G. Evans, Dean of Undergraduate Studies at SF State.

San Francisco State University’s presentation on mapping ePortfolio artifacts or assignments to objectives at all levels--class, program/department, college, campus, and even national (e.g., AAC&U LEAP Expected Learning Outcomes).

"To successfully implement the Race to the Top, and to reach the goals that I mentioned earlier — preparing all students for success in college or careers — we need to use our creativity, leveraged by the Race to the Top award, to build a new way of running California's educational enterprise. The new system must be less hierarchical and more collaborative, student-centered rather than adult-centric, and data-driven with mutual accountability at all levels.”

ePortfolio intersect: Evidence of leaning can include artifacts, which allow us to tangibly see students develop during the process of learning. ePortfolios should be student-centered, and develop through a collaborative process.

Cambridge, Chen, Johnson
ePortfolio Concept Map:

The Honorable Arne Duncan

“We want an accountability system that factors in student growth, progress in closing achievement gaps, proficiency towards college and career-ready standards, high school graduation and college enrollment rates.”

ePortfolio intersects: Documenting student growth, alignment with standards.

As mentioned above,

And, see the UK’s JISC site on “Widening Participation” at

“The president also wants to add $500 million to the Investing in Innovation program. He wants to reserve $150 million for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics programs. He also wants to give rural schools a competitive advantage in the competition because understands the challenges they face.”

ePortfolio intersects: these disciplines are all based on scaffolded learning … step-by-step processes leading to culmination. Also, ePortfolios can break distance and socio-economic barriers and rural schools can partner with urban or suburban schools allowing students to ‘buddy up’ with distant co-classmates.

“And because NCLB narrowed the curriculum, we're looking to expand it again so that our children get a well-rounded education—one that includes rich content in history, the arts, foreign languages, and financial literacy.”

ePortfolio intersects: ePortfolios allow for rich multi-media use, especially valuable in these disciplines.

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