Integration, Personalization, and ePortfolios - the future?

Published in 'Innovate', Susan LACour discusses the Future of Integration, Personalization, and ePortfolio Technologies. In this article, "personalization" is seen as "smart" technology reviewing what is known about a user and tailoring information, content, and layout to suit. While "integration" is the bringing together of "disparate systems and services to better accommodate student needs". Although mainly refering to products from Sungard SCT (with whom LaCour is a VP) there are some interesting examples, eg targetted messaging. LaCour describes ePortfolios in the widest sense, with the potential to incorporate graphics, video, and audio, as well as text. She notes their potential use "as a repository for collecting and evaluating learning outcomes", but also highlights that their portability means learners can take them with them on leaving an institution. In the US, LaCour foresees high school students' eportfolios being used as part of "strategic enrollment management" by institutions to identify prospective students who could be anticipated to fit well at their institutions. A similar approach could be used by business when seeking employees with particular skills. In other domains, LaCour suggests that eportfolios might be used to "enable governments to distribute financial aid more wisely". Interesting thought!

While in Europe, actions are underway to ensure that by 2010 every citizen will have an ePortfolio: ePortfolio 2010. Supported by EIfEL (European Institute for E-Learning), among others.

There will be a ULiveandLearn webcast with LaCour at 3:00 PM EST or 8pm BST on Thursday, May 5, 2005.


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