Practicing what we preach

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  • Little bit on the introduction of MyFolio:Piloted 2010/11Introduced campus-wide 2011/12To date 3,500 users
  • This sentiment was echoed at Kent. Academics felt that : They wanted some evidence that MyFolio worked before they used it. They wanted other people to make mistakes before they introduced it to a group of students.They are less ‘techy’ than their students so are weary of introducing something that they are not completely comfortable with. They wanted case studies of use which were from people that they knew in a familiar context i.e. situated case studies
  • Digital retreat: explain the idea behind this and how it will work. Mention team approach and a day away from other pressures to focus on the technologyReplaced Pebblepad with MyFolio which has less tools: This was done in 2011 based on feedback from staff and students that there were too many toolsOur idea to establish a Community of Practice based on Conole’sCloudworks but much smaller scale on one piece of technology and just for Kent staffFor all disciplines and support staff to try to break down barriers between people which are endemic in all big institutions and to cut down on duplication of work this is the project which is currently supported by the HEA/CRA initiative
  • We tried to use a Pedagogical approach to embedding PDPrather than putting the technology first using other approaches such as Engestrom’s (2005)’object centred’ approach used in Cloudworks or an ‘ego centred approach’ described by Dron & Anderson (2007)
  • Show MyFolio CoP
  • The three essential elements of a CoP which Wenger (1998) identifies; are all present within our group. Each member of staff is mutually engaged through their own PDP/employability project which they support by using the e‐portfolio. There is a shared repertoire of skills development which has been set out in the University’s Employability Strategy (2010) and a sense of joint enterprise has been created by organising a showcase day to present a range of the e‐portfolio projects at a staff conference.
  • Evaluation of MyFolio is currently in the early stages. We are gathering feedback from students via questionnaires (200 approx. responses). Evaluation from staff gathered via telephone interviews we are seeking information on MyFolio and on the support provided to help staff to use it
  • Alternative qusWhat barriers have you faced when introducing new technologies?How have you been able to over come those barriers?


  • 1. Practicing whatwe preach:building an e-portfolioCommunity ofPracticeLouise FrithDaniel Clark
  • 2. Kent’s e-portfolio
  • 3. Enabling the use oftechnology in teaching “When asked what they would find most helpful to enable them to use technologies more in their teaching, most teachers say give me examples, in my subject area and point me to relevant people I can discuss these issues with”. Conole (2010) From sharing to participating (passive to active) O’Reilly 2005
  • 4. What are the barriers to E- portfolios being taken up more widely in L&T?ISSUES ResponsesToo many tools Replaced Pebblepad with MyFolioTime to learn the new technology Established a digital retreatbefore using it with studentsNeed local examples of use Established a Community of Practice for Kent staffLack of sharing among disciplines Emphasised that it’s for all& between academics & services disciplines and support staff
  • 5. Methodology: Principles of ourapproachUsed Clegg and Bradley’s (2006) 3 approaches toPDP to arrange the case studies: Professional Academic EmployabilityWe aimed for our community of practice to be: User centred Experiential Shared Evolving
  • 6. MyFolio Community ofPracticeWhat we did: Set-up a group in MyFolio for any member of staff using MyFolio Emphasised that the group is for all staff (academics and services) this reflects how we expect students to use it i.e. to record their academic and other activity Currently has 33 members and 14 pages which share practice
  • 7. Example page
  • 8. Three elements of a CoP (Wenger,1998) Showcase dayOwn pages Employabilitywithin the group strategy
  • 9. Evaluation of the folioStudents’ views Staff views Gathered via  Gathered via questionnaire telephone interviews and feedback on the group page
  • 10. Questions What new technology has led you to do things differently in your teaching/interactions with students? How have you been able to communicate your use of new technology to colleagues?
  • 11. References Clegg & Bradley (2006) Conole (2010) O’Reilly (2005) Wenger, E. (1998) Communities of Practice: learning, meaning and identity. Cambridge University Press.