Edublogs webinar overviews – Personal e-portfolio journey and a Serendipity session


Once again this overview is for two webinars – a FineFocus and a Serendipity. Both sessions were lively and interactive with lots of sharing of ideas annd opinions.

E-portfolios for RPL – a personal journey

Our first FineFocus webinar for 2013 was about using an e-portfolio for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). This recorded session was about Phil Hart’s (@philhart) personal journey through the RPL process in gaining higher level vocational qualifications through recognition of his prior experience and learning rather than following a formal course.

Phil began the session with whiteboards to elicit some thoughts from the group on the what and when of e-portfolios.

The next part of the session was a brief consideration of the technologies that can be used in e-portfolio building, beginning with a whiteboard for ideas from participants and continuing with Phil’s own mix of tools (a website format) used to produce his Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) portfolios. This led on to a look at  the design objectives of the website and the portfolio structure used, including drilling down through units to performance criterion level.

Phil then discussed the assessment process (including the challenge test he completed with the assessors for authentication purposes) and lessons learned. Some of the lessons came out of his first portfolio and were applied in the second and third portfolios to give a more streamlined and focussed product.

This was a terrific session – I always find hearing about “personal journeys” fascinating! There were also lots of opportunities for interaction enabling all of us to share our own ideas and experiences of our own and/or student e-portfolios.


As always in Serendipity we began this recorded session with a whiteboard for topic ideas. These were flowing well giving us several topics to choose between in the poll. The topic selected was

“Why do so many students drop out of online courses? How to keep them motivated”

We started with a blank whiteboard focussing on the “why people drop out” side of the topic.

These ideas were developed and extended through discussion in text chat and audio. We then moved on to consider ideas for overcoming the risk of students dropping out. Again this started from a whiteboard and expanded from there into both audio and text chat discussion with many ideas around participative activities, ownership and community.


Two great sessions that provided massess of food for thought and reflection as well as many links and strategies. E-portfolios are always a topic of interest as there are probably as many variants as there are people building their own portfolios. Maintaining student motivation and reducing dropout from online courses is one of those issues that most of us are always keen to discuss in our constant search for ways to keep today’s learners energised.

Our Next Session

Our next Webinar is a FineFocus session. Join us for “Extraordinary Literacy Learning!” in to hear about how we delivered a pilot (funded by the Australian National Vocational E-Learning Strategy initiative – Partnerships for Participation) adult literacy course entirely online using virtual classroom, blogs and other e-tools. Join us on Thursday Jan 24th at 23:00 GMT/UTC the time for you will vary depending on your timezone (check yours here) Thursday afternoon/evening in the USA, late night Thursday in Europe, and Friday morning Jan 25th in Australia – in the usual Blackboard Collaborate virtual room.


Edublogs webinar overview – “e-Portfolios – what, why & how!”


This Fine Focus session was presented by one of our regular participants Sandra Stewart (@marndon) from New South Wales. Sandra introduced us to e-portfolios with fantastic illustrations from her own experience. The session was recorded as always and is well worth watching!

The Session

Sandra was a great facilitator keeping us busy & therefore engaged throughout! Initially she found out about our awareness/understanding of e-portfolios and then moved on to show a variety of examples using different platforms through Application Share (this is somewhat problematic to use in BbC as opposed to Elluminate).

Sandra encouraged us to think about the purposes of e-portfolios and gave us an activity to help us think about the potential for us personally! So agree with Sandra that to use anything with students we need to have a degree of familiarity with the “tool/app” ourselves!

I particularly enjoyed that the examples were not all using Mahara. Not that I have anything against it but it seems often to be the only option mentioned in Aus VocEd!


This was a GREAT session – so love it when our regular participants run a session as this is a very large part of what we are about!  Sandra has encouraged and motivated me to make more effort with e-portfolios. My institute has just got Edublogs Campus & we plan to enable students to use blogs as an e-portfolio. Part of the reasoning behing this is that I already know Edublogs blogging platform well – this will enable me to help my colleagues more than if we moved immediately to a specified e-portfolio platform.

Next Webinar

Our next session is an Edublogs “Serendipity” session on Thursday September 29that 23:00 GMT/UTC (Afternoon/Evening USA) or Friday September 30th at 7am West Aus, mid morning Eastern States Aus depending on your timezone (check yours here) – in the usual Elluminate room. This is one of our fortnightly unconference sessions where we invite you to bring along your “hot topics” and “burning issues” for our poll on the topic