The following student statement collected as part of UBC’s ePortfolio Pilot Project confirms this unwritten instructional arrangement (Tosh, Penny Light, Flemming & Haywood, 2005):
The things we are supposed to do for it [the e-portfolio] are kind of like assignments and no offense but everybody knows, for assignments, you give them what they want – you give them what they want and they give you your mark, that’s basically the way it works.
Unfortunately, jumping through the hoops prevents deeper learning and is killing the meaningful connections that come from reflections on learning in an eportfolio (Barrett, 2005).
After reading this it confirmed my deepest fears. I never want to be the educator giving students a grade for their work , and missing out on the rigor of learning. More is not always better, and when it comes to introducing an e-portfolio to my students , I want them to own it. The students must feel in control of their learning , and actually working to learn, and not just earn a grade.
There has been so many times just in this online learning program, that I have had to reprogram my thinking. I am learning to approach my work to learn, not for a grade, and students like educators have to be reprogrammed. They have to believe their learning is for a purpose greater than a grade. COVA is teaching educators a new way to teach. Educators have to engage their students enough, to make the connection that has purpose in their learning.