Thank you for bringing the Twitter conversation onto your blog. That’s how I realized that there was more going on than just the 2 tweets I had seen earlier. 🙂
You are correct when you say that e-portfolio solutions (no matter what they may look like) be available beyond educational institutions to ensure that (former) students continue to use them. In contrast to LMSs, e-portfolios center around the student.
I have not yet met anybody from the efolio provider in Minnesota, but from what I can gather from the web site, Minnesota provides space for all its residents to create an e-portfolio at eFolio Minnesota for free (to a certain data allowance).
For Mahara, there are services around that offer free hosting (again, up to a certain data allowance). I do not know how many there are, as there is not yet a list of them, but I have seen FolioSpaces (hosted in Australia primarily). Ian writes a bit about FolioSpaces outside of their web site here. If anybody knows of others, I’d like to hear from them.
In New Zealand, the MyPortfolio services for schools and tertiary education are hosted Mahara solutions that do not sit on an institution server. Thus it is easy for students to take along their portfolio when they switch schools. On myportfolio.school.nz they only have to be put into a different institution. There is not even the need to export and import a portfolio. If they go on to study at university, they export their Mahara portfolio and have it imported into myportfolio.ac.nz. Later on they can export it again and use on another hosted solution or even a different portfolio system (that follows the LEAP2A portfolio standard).
It will be interesting to see how far we can take “lifelong” in the electronic world. Will it actually be feasible to work with one (dedicated) portfolio software for more than 5 or 10 years or will we have to find other solutions and try to archive a certain phase instead of having to upgrade everything to the current software?
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