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The Portfolio tool is designed to allow students to reflect on their own learning. Students can add artifacts, design and share their portfolios. Instructors can also require a Portfolio as the submission in response to an Assignment in a Course.


New Features and Enhancements for All Users

The Portfolio subsystem is intended primarily as a tool for students to reflect on their own learning or as a tool for assessing student learning. The new Portfolio framework will replace the legacy Portfolio framework (Basic and Personal Portfolios) entirely. Legacy Portfolios will automatically be converted to the new framework.


Sample Portfolio

Backward Compatibility

Portfolios created in either the Basic Portfolio tool or the Personal Portfolio tool in the legacy Portfolio framework will still be present in the new Portfolio framework, and will continue to be viewable, shareable, and editable. The backward compatibility of the new Portfolio framework assures that authors will retain access to their existing Portfolios and be able to take advantage of the new functionality with those Portfolios in the new framework.

Accessing Portfolios

In the new Portfolio framework, the access to the My Portfolios area has been moved to the Global Navigation Menu under the “Tools” accordion. The Portfolios tool consists of three sub-sections: My Portfolios (where the user creates and manages their Portfolios), My Artifacts (where the user creates and manages their Artifacts), and Received Portfolios (where a user accesses Portfolios that have been directly shared with him by other users).

My Portfolios featuring three subsections

Creating Portfolios

Creating a Portfolio is much cleaner, simpler, and effective with the new Portfolio framework. To begin creating a Portfolio the user selects the Create Portfolio button in the My Portfolios sub-section. The first time that a user is presented with the new Portfolio authoring canvas the system will present her with the option to view a brief guided tour. The guided tour walks the user through the new authoring interface at a high level to orient the user to the new tools.

Brief guided tour of portfolio tool

Creating Personal Artifacts & Assignment Artifacts

Artifacts are evidence of learning, frequently accompanied by reflection by the learner. Artifacts are managed independently in the My Artifacts repository of the Portfolio, as an Artifact may be used in more than one Portfolio. Artifacts can be created ahead of time or “on the fly” while the user is authoring a Portfolio.

In the new Portfolio framework, there are two types of Artifacts: Personal Artifacts and Assignment Artifacts. Personal Artifacts consist of a Title, Description, and Content. The Content can be generated free-form using a Content Editor, or can be a file (or files) uploaded from the local computer or selected the Content Collection, or both (free-form content + files). Assignment Artifacts are artifacts that are generated by converting a graded submission to an Assignment in a Blackboard Learn Course into an Artifact. Assignment Artifacts not only include the submitted file/content, but they also include metadata about the assignment: the Assignment details, the grade the student received, and any feedback provided by the instructor.

Create personal artifact

Portfolio Design Options

To modify the layout and design of the Portfolio, the user selects the Preview & Customize button in the Portfolio authoring canvas. The preview of the Portfolio is displayed. The user can then select the Customize button in the upper left to choose different layouts and color palettes. The new Portfolio framework requires the users to make far fewer decisions about design and more consistently will result in attractive Portfolio.

Portfolio customization options

Portfolio Sharing

Portfolio authors can share their Portfolios with individual Users, external users (via email), Courses, Organizations, Institution Roles, or All System Accounts (which makes the shared Portfolio discoverable via the Search button in the Received Portfolios area). Whenever a Portfolio author shares a Portfolio with other users, each “sharing event” creates a static snapshot of that Portfolio at that point in time. What is shared is the static Portfolio Snapshot, so even if the Portfolio author makes changes in his Portfolio, the recipient is still looking at the static Portfolio Snapshot of that Portfolio at that point in time.

Assigned Portfolios

The new Portfolio framework introduces a new feature for instructors: Assigned Portfolios. This new feature allows the instructor to require a Portfolio as the submission in response to an Assignment in a Course. This is not a separate type of Assignment; it is simply a new option on the existing Assignment capability. With Assigned Portfolios, portfolios are easier to use and assess as part of authentic assessment practices in a Course.

Assigned Portfolio

Learn more about Portfolios on the Blackboard Help site.