Traditional Paper Reimagined as an Informative Webpage Within the ePortfolio
Overview and Purpose of the Assignment--Prior to ePortfolio, students in my International Relations course wrote research papers on various contemporary global issues. After SLCC implemented ePortfolio, it seemed kind of lame to have students continue to upload these traditional papers so I transformed the assignment so that students made informative webpages within their ePortfolios. The details of a recent version of the assignment are available HERE.
The assignment asks students to divide the topic into manageable sections, with each section represented on a separate page of the website. The students enjoy creating an informative webpage instead of a traditional paper. They can much more readily employ multimedia in their work, and yet they still have to do the kind of research and writing I would normally expect in a formal paper.
The grading rubric--which I share with the students in the syllabus--encourages students to
use quantitative data in the informative website,
mix headings, text, images and quantitative data, and
develop the major political concepts, personalities, or events needed to give a complete treatment of the topic.
Thus the assignment is designed to develop more than written communication skills, but also quantitative literacy and content knowledge.
Reflection Prompts--I am currently not asking students to reflect specifically about this assignment. Instead, I have two reflection prompts that are about the course in general.
Choose from one of the following topics on which to reflect:
Connect what you learned in this class with what you learned in other courses you have taken at SLCC or before. Be specific, as generic platitudes are not going to convince your professor. The connections might be directly related to subject knowledge, or they might be more related to concepts and processes, or they might be otherwise unrelated issues or learning between which YOU found a connection.
Examine the General Education learning outcomes at the end of the syllabus. While no course is expected to help students achieve all of those outcomes, individual courses are supposed to provide students with opportunities to move toward achieving as many of those outcomes as make sense in a given course's context. Make specific references toward your work in this course and how it indicates you are making progress toward at least three important Gen Ed outcomes.
Student Work--Here are some examples of student work on this assignment.