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Undergraduate Portfolios

e-Portfolio Guidelines

Required for students who declared the English major from Fall 2016 on and the English Adolescence Education major from Fall 2017 on.

The e-portfolio will be used to assess the department’s program objectives and the learning outcomes while simultaneously providing students with a meaningful record of their experiential growth and a valuable resource for their career or graduate-school search.

  • In ENGL 106, the instructor will guide the new majors in creating their “working portfolio” in Google docs. The student will be the owner of the e-portfolio, but will give editing rights to the student’s adviser. (Google folders cannot have shared owners.) The student’s e-portfolio will also be shared with the 106 instructor, with whatever editing rights the 106 instructor feels are necessary.

    • The Curriculum Committee recommends that the 106 instructor also provide some academic/historical context for e-portfolios, perhaps by having students research their implementation and usefulness in other university English departments.

    • Part of the e-portfolio should be an index with which the student and student’s advisor can keep track of e-portfolio submissions every semester.

    • To maintain consistency and clarity across e-portfolios, the committee recommends that the portfolio be titled “LastName, FirstName English Portfolio.” Each file within the e-portfolio should be titled “ENGL or ENED CourseNumber Semester Year.”

    • For students who are not in ENGL 106 their first semester as an English/English Adolescence Education major, a description will be put online with instructions on how to create an e-portfolio.

  • Every semester, the student will submit at least one paper or project that best represents work done in at least one English or English Education class. The paper should be the ungraded version of the assignment.

    • One paper/project must be from a course within the Theoretical Approaches category

    • One paper/project must be a research paper

    • Each paper must be at least two pages in length

    • Students can submit their paper into the e-portfolio any time before the advising meeting, or they can submit their paper during the advising meeting itself, using either the advisor's computer or the student’s laptop.

    • During the advising meeting, the advisor should indicate on the e-portfolio’s index that an appropriate paper has been submitted.

  • As is current practice in ENGL 400/ENED 450, the instructor will ask the students to reflect upon the work they have completed in the major. To build upon this reflection, the instructor will guide the students in the creation of a “showcase portfolio.” In this showcase portfolio, students will be asked to synthesize the category outcomes for the English or English Adolescent Education major in relation to the assignments submitted for the portfolio. The students should reflect upon how the various categories that make up the major worked together to foster the student’s growth in the program. In order to provide evidence of the student’s overall development in the major, students should also address how the papers demonstrate the student’s ability to write coherently and effectively in various genres for multiple audiences and purposes (department outcome #1). At least one paper from ENGL 106 and 213, one from the theoretical approaches category, and at least two other categories should be addressed in this showcase portfolio.

    • English Works/STD, with supervision and input from the ENGL 106 instructor(s) and the department chairperson or his/her designee, will share or make a video that walks students through the compilation process of the showcase portfolio. The instructor of ENGL 400/ENED 450 will assign the video as homework, after a brief in-class introduction. The ENGL 400/ENED 450 instructor is encouraged to allow some class time for questions and discussion about the project. Students should also be encouraged to discuss their showcase portfolio with their advisor. A reception, sponsored by English Works or STD, will give students the opportunity to share their showcase portfolios.

Purpose of the Portfolio

Required for students who declared the English major from Fall 2004-Spring 2016 and the English Adolescence Education major from Fall 2004-Spring 2017.

We believe that students' conscious reflection upon their own learning can deepen and expand that learning. As students look back upon the items they have contributed to their portfolio regularly throughout their tenure as English/English Education majors, they have an opportunity to contemplate their own intellectual growth and understanding.

Keeping the above in mind, the English Department has chosen to use student portfolios to assess its program strengths and weaknesses. The primary purpose of the portfolio is to assess whether the Department is achieving the following goals:

  1. That students read attentively, closely, and critically;
  2. That students write thoughtfully, coherently, and persuasively;
  3. That students develop and challenge their own thinking through scholarly research.
  4. Candidates seeking initial and permanent/professional certification will also meet NCTE standards for the preparation of teachers of English Language Arts.

Contents of the Portfolio

All English majors are therefore required to submit for their portfolios one paper each semester during which they are English majors and taking an English class. The only qualifications are the following:

  1. At least one paper must involve research;
  2. Papers must be at least two pages long, but longer papers are preferable.

The final portfolio paper will be the exit paper, a paper in which the students look at our goals and discuss their careers as English majors in terms of those goals. The exit paper will be written during the semester that the student takes Senior Seminar (ENGL 400) or Seminar for Teachers of English (ENED 450). Whether the paper will be part of the Seminar syllabus is up to the instructor. Students will take ENGL 401, Portfolio Completion, while they are in ENGL 400 or ENED 450. Students who have not (except for the exit paper) completed their portfolios will be prohibited from enrolling in ENGL 401.

Students, please keep a copy of these Guidelines and the Portfolio Checklist for your own consultation. Advisors will place a copy of the signed checklist in the student’s advising file and update it each semester as the student turns in work.

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