Thursday, April 12, 2007

A Folio of eFolios

We are using a number of digital folio technologies this year - and we may continue using most of them. Each seems to suit a different student and teacher needs...

MS SharePoint (2003)

We host and administer SharePoint on campus. Every student can create a personal space with:

  • room to upload and share documents and digital media
  • message space
  • tasks list - with task management functionality
  • links and other modules such as discussion forums and surveys
  • access control - students can set who has what level of access
  • presencing - the system indicates who is currently online - integrates with MS Office

It's also possible for users to add modules that display tags and flickr feeds from mobile phone uploads:


We use an off-campus service with web administration. Several teachers are using Moodle for their classes with
  • space to upload documents and digital media
  • forums and blogs - with tagging
  • news, calendar, messages
  • student management and statistics

Teachers find that Moodle provides a more controlled on-line learning environment that is particularly suited to Open Learning classes - although a few other classes also use it.

ELGG - Social Networking

This is the first time we have tried a social networking learning environment. We are using a hosted Elgg service while we evaluate it. We are currently using it:
  • for some classes and special interest groups (SIGs)
  • to host learning journals
  • as a digital folio for tagged multimedia
  • to aggregate RSS feeds
  • to connect students with similar interests and learning goals

Although we only have 80 users on this system at the moment the tags are beginning to build and link people and resources:

Some of our current questions are:

  • How can year 12 students take their digital folios with them as they move on to work and further education?
  • Should we attempt to provide one solution that attempts to fit all needs or should we offer several tools for students and teachers to choose from?
  • How can students manage digital folios for assessment and potential employers and themselves?
  • What is the relationship between our 'official' digital folios and other online spaces that students use to upload multimedia such as DeviantArt or YouTube or MySpace?

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Making Worldviews Explicit

I've tweaked my worldview presentations to English classes this year... partly to fit in with this year's texts and themes - and partly to say a little more about postmodernism and relativism.

The year 11/12 classes appeared to have stronger relativistic assumptions this year with many believing that we can do little more in dialogue than agree to express our own views and hear and respect the views of others.

The possibility of complimentary, inclusive or integral worldviews were very new concepts for most of the students. I spent a little more time this year introducing traditionalism, modernism, postmodernism and integralism.

Our discussion around "What is Love?" covered all four integral quadrants:

As did group discussion on "The Meaning of Life."

I was then able to generalise the 'integral mapping' of any issue like this:

Both the students and their teachers have used this generalised integral map in subsequent classes. I'll do some further evaluation later on in their courses...

Labels: ,