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Scaffolding VCAL learners with e-portfolios

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Ken Johnson

Ken Johnson

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  • Ken Thank everyone for attending This presentation is about an AFLF trial but we ’re also going to talk about the bigger context, which is the development of a new delivery model for VCAL that embeds eportfolios Explain who the AFLF are, what the EIT is and it ’s purpose (to investigate and identify the features of an e-portfolio system which supports workforce development requirements and/or improve learner participation). We were one of two successful applicants (the other being Great Southern Institute of Technology in Albany) Explain what VCAL is
  • As part of Youth Strategy, University committed to an integrated approach to Victorian Certificates of Applied Learning with Certificate II in trades such as building and construction, electrical, plumbing auto, etc. A set of domains to focus learning and engage students adopted to structure the model – My self focusing on activities to develop identify, personal expression and self confidence, My community to focus on skills for working together and in work teams and for community good and My world which focuses on public debate, social responsibility, ethics and law.
  • As part of Youth Strategy, University committed to an integrated approach to Victorian Certificates of Applied Learning with Certificate II in trades such as building and construction, electrical, plumbing auto, etc . A set of domains to focus learning and engage students adopted to structure the model – My self focusing on activities to develop identify, personal expression and self confidence, My community to focus on skills for working together and in work teams and for community good and My world which focuses on public debate, social responsibility, ethics and law.
  • Ken Describe why an ePortfolio was used It was thought that it would be a good way to support the learners to manage their own learning, document their progress, collate evidence of competency and to generate a CV to seek employer interest in an apprenticeship on completion of the Certificate II qualification. Describe why PebblePad was used (existing VU tool) Describe Profile and Form tools
  • Ken
  • Ken
  • Ken
  • Hands on session difficult because teachers not online due to access issues for Harvester staff to VU IT system Hands on session not possible with students – enrolments not complete and students not able to access VU Pebblepad licence
  • Ken and Rosa Students enrolled as both Harvester and VU student. Enrolments and access to PP only occurred half way through the trial Harvester/VU relationship still new so access to VU network was still being set up. Not using VU email relates to PebblePad notifications going to student VU account, which the students didn ’t user. Therefore they weren’t receiving timely notifications of PebblePad activity Students didn ’t immediately see that they had skills and knowledge of value (eg. second language skills, home renovation experience) Maturity issues – Unlike many adults these young people lacked the maturity to engage in reflection which is used extensively in the Profiles. They need assistance in making the link between skills used in family and community life to their potential in a working life – for example facility with technology, personal organisation, leadership in the group LLN issues - Many students did not have the skills to write in an appropriate way. Use Txt short and speech. They need direct instruction on how to ‘ blog ’ and refer to feelings and reflection Attendance problems leads to issues of continuity and completion of simple projects.
  • Ken and Rosa Profiles provide a good way for the teacher to indicate to students what the assessment criteria are, what the evidence requirements are and how to collect evidence against those requirements (see next slide) HIA discussions
  • This is an example of a profile built around skills needed for Project 5 Design Rotunda in which students need to learn about sub floor structures. The left hand menu identifies the the full range of integrated Learning Outcomes involved in the project. The screen shot shows the questions for sub floor installation. I can used as the stem questions – competency based and positive Prompts in italics scaffolds the student in the types of evidence that they can upload and what writing is needed. These writing samples are assessed using criteria for VCAL learning outcomes
  • Students were able to relate quickly to the technology. For example, they all use Facebook and described it as facebook for learning. They quickly personalised their accounts. Teachers immediately saw the link in using VCAL Personal Development Skills units as an organiser for Pebblepad particularly through Profile function. Self assessment leads to action planning At least 3 Integrated curricula being written embedding Pebblepad assets as part of ongoing assessment process. This model of integration is being implemented as part of the Youth Strategy 2012 Carpentry, Creative Industries and Animal studies
  • Rosa and Ken Other VCAL areas are Animal Studies and Creative Industries
  • Transcript

    • 1. 2011 E-portfolios Implementation Trial Scaffolding VCAL learners with ePortfolios ePortfolios Australia Conference 2011 Ken Johnson and Rosa McKenna
    • 2. VU Youth strategy: guiding principles
      • Providing engaging courses and pathways that meet student needs— multi-sector offerings to improve employability.
      • Extending learning and teaching approaches that put the student at the centre , inside and outside the classroom
      • Recognising and responding to student diversity—diagnosing and responding to student needs; enhancing learning, language and numeracy development ; and acknowledging the financial and cultural and linguistic diversity of students
    • 3. VU Youth strategy: guiding principles
      • Strengthening student relationships and partnerships through engagement , student leadership and socialisation; responsive administrative and student support services.
      • Fostering environments that enable active student learning —diverse spaces and places; virtual environments; Learning Commons; on and off campus.
      • Assisting students to make informed decisions about their education and careers
    • 4. The education setting
      • Harvester Technical College
      • Australian Technical College built in 2009
      • 2011 Hybrid school - managed jointly by education department and VU
      • Offers the Victorian Certificates in Applied Learning (VCAL) and entry level AQF 2 VET qualifications
      • Approximately 150 students aged from 15 -18
      • The western suburbs of Melbourne
      • fastest growing area in Australia
      • home to people from 130 different nationalities
      • Low levels of educational qualification
      • Low level of school completion
    • 5. Carpentry VCAL: new integrated model
      • integrates vocational skills and underpinning language, literacy, numeracy and personal development skills in inquiry based projects to generate applied learning in vocational contexts
      • Carpentry includes 7 projects - My learning, My tools, My skills, Designing a rotunda, Building a rotunda, Marketing the rotunda and My career
      • Uses teaching teams - a qualified carpenter and English and maths specialists share the teaching load
      • Utilises resources of partners – Harvester, Newport Campus, Smart team, youth support services
    • 6. Carpentry students: A challenging and diverse group
      • 15 male students aged between 15 and 18
      • Some were regarded as ‘hopeless’ i.e. chronic non attenders, and resistant to formal learning
      • Attracted 3 students specifically for pathway to apprenticeship
      • 2 students were regarded as functionally illiterate
      • 2 other students had challenging personal backgrounds
      • Half students from Pacific Islander background
    • 7.  
    • 8. Trial Overview
      • Goal:
      • To determine whether the Profile and/or Form tools within PebblePad can scaffold the learning of VCAL students within VU ’s “integrated delivery model”
    • 9. PebblePad Profile
    • 10. PebblePad Form
    • 11. Trial Overview
      • Intended Outcomes:
      • To develop an efficient delivery mechanism for scaffolding the learners in collecting evidence to be assessed.
      • To gain a better understanding of the effectiveness of e-portfolios in communicating the competencies of students to potential employers.
    • 12. Trial Overview
      • Approach:
      • Provide training to VCAL (Carpentry) teachers (2x3hr workshops)
      • Provide induction to VCAL (Carpentry) students (1x3hr workshop)
      • Use PebblePad in computer lab sessions during Semester 1, 2011
      • Discussions with potential employers
      • Evaluate findings
      • Disseminate findings to teachers from other VCAL streams.
    • 13. Trial Barriers
      • Administrative issues - Timeliness of enrolment and thereby access to PebblePad
      • Technical issues – access to VU IT systems
      • Usability issues – Forgotten passwords, finding PebblePad, not using VU email
      • Teacher capacity issues - “Innovation overload” and digital literacy
      • Student capacity issues – VCAL students need time and support to develop reflective and self-directed learning skills, and to value their life experiences
      • Project issues – time allocated
    • 14. Trial Successes
      • Identification and resolution of barriers – administrative, technical, usability, capacity
      • The knowledge that the Profile tool offers better opportunities than the Form tool for scaffolding the learning of VCAL students within VU ’s “integrated delivery model”
      • The knowledge that there is interest from carpentry employers in eportfolios and that eportfolios provide a new way for students to communicate their competence to those employers
    • 15. Trial Successes
    • 16. Broader Successes
      • Evidence of student engagement with eportfolios
      • A greater understanding of the affordances and limitations of PebblePad, both in relation to the Profile and Form tools but also the other features within PebblePad
      • Integration of e-portfolios into the VCAL curriculum model
      • Preliminary work towards integrating e-portfolios into the Creative Industries and Animal Science streams of VCAL
    • 17. Future Directions
      • Deliver the dissemination workshop to other VCAL teachers
      • Refine the Profiles for use with other VCAL teachers
      • Identify support structures for Harvester as PebblePad embedded in new curriculum
        • IT support person trained in Pebblepad and liaise with VU IT
        • Train up a teacher volunteer as onsite expert
        • Include Pebblepad training in teacher and student induction processes
        • Continue to develop Pebblepad assets for ongoing use in specific programs eg project based profiles, resources in Webfolios
        • Teacher feedback blogs
    • 18.
        • Ken Johnson
        • Manager, E-learning Projects
        • Faculty of Workforce Development
        • Victoria University
        • PHONE +61 3 9919 8594
        • EMAIL [email_address]
      Contact Details
        • Rosa McKenna
        • Communication in Education and Training Pty Ltd
        • Curriculum Consultant
        • PHONE +61 3 93917726
        • EMAIL [email_address]
        • The full report is at http://www.flexiblelearning.net.au/content/e-portfolios-funding