Welcome to our Eportfolio Pilot Project
Northeastern University’s Writing Program is currently piloting TaskStream eportfolios in 15 classes enrolling over 250 students. Seven faculty members, representing various ranks (graduate students, part-time lecturers, full-time lecturers, and tenured faculty) are involved in this pilot. Working as a teaching inquiry group, the faculty are exploring eportfolios as teaching and learning tools in First-Year Writing and Advanced Writing in the Disciplines. Portfolio designs vary, including flexible and defined structures, developmental and showcase portfolios, informal feedback, peer review and structured evaluation. Each approach reflects the inquiry questions the instructor is pursuing through this pilot. These questions include the following:
- How does using an eportfolio help students to view writing as a process?
- Does having this type of eportfolio build accountability and ownership of the process of writing?
- How can an electronic portfolio be designed to emphasize the centrality of reflection in the writing process?
- How do new media composing and products ask us to change our assessment criteria?
- Can technology be alienating to students? How can teachers manage variation in digital literacy?
- How do different levels of visibility of students’ work affect the quality of students’ writing and peer review?
- How do different portfolio formats help students manage the identity transition between student and professional?
Our faculty group is meeting regularly this spring to share our progress, troubleshoot, and theorize about the meaning of our work and the applicability of lessons learned for a broader use of eportfolios in the Northeastern Writing Program and, we hope, beyond. We expect to bring seven or eight new instructors on board in the fall and to expand thereafter as resources allow. Though we are still early in this project, we are excited about the learning opportunities it has provided both for our students and for us.
We hope you enjoy learning about our work on this website.