Portfolios have many uses ranging from assessment in an academic program to personal marketing in the job search process. As I prepared for a recent conference presentation on career ePortfolios for students, I wondered how many instructional designers have portfolios. This post explores the possibility of using a blog as a portfolio presentation tool.
Why use a blog?
The features and functions of a blog lend themselves to both presenting work samples and reflection on the work itself. They allow you to tell the story of a project and demonstrate the result. Blogs are also low or no cost alternatives to having a personal website. And since blogging toolsare designed for those without advanced web design and programming skills, they offer quick set-up, a professional look and feel, and intuitive administrative dashboards.
Blog pages allow for easy organization of portfolio artifacts. Think about structure before you get started. Two approaches to consider:
- Resume/CV – use typical resume sub-headings to create your blog and present related information (Education, Experience, Certification, Publications, etc.)
- Standards/Competencies – consider using an existing list of standards or professional competencies to frame your portfolio (AECT, ASTD, IBSTPI, etc.)
Selecting Portfolio Artifacts
- If you decide to include current or past coursework assignments, review and modify, tweak, to make as perfect as possible. Only your best work should make it into the portfolio!
- If you decide to include current or past work projects, make sure you have permission to make them, or elements of them, available online. This work is usually owned by your employer or a client, so prepare accordingly.
- Build something from scratch for the purpose of the portfolio if you don’t already have something available.
- Focus on what you want to do in the future and choose artifacts that demonstrate skills and experience related to your goals.
A Few Examples
- Eric Stoller’s Blog – organized using College Student Services Administration’s Nine Competencies.
- Denzinger Design Portfolio – interesting layout using images, combination of school and experience artifacts.
- Kerstin Howard’s e-Portfolio – basic WordPress.com blog used as a portfolio. Resume tab, reflections on coursework, and work samples.
A lot of portfolio/ePortfolio advice is available online. Here are a few sites to get you started:
- ePortfolios for Learning – Helen Barrett (Check out steps for setting up Blogger as an eportfolio.)
- Career Oriented ePortfolio Resources – MERLOT
- What is an ePortfolio? – Career Opportunities
Share your portfolio! Do you have a web-based portfolio? If so, please share your lessons learned (and your link!) in the comments area.
Image credit: Plearn, Flickr