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COPY Southeast Regional 2014 at the University of Georgia
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Join AAEEBL at the University of Georgia
November 10-11, 2014

Conceptions, Misconceptions, and Best Practices:
The Whys and Hows of ePortfolios

Conference Context

Faculty and administrators in higher education traverse a landscape full of emerging and evolving technologies, and they must make decisions regarding the efficacy of these nascent technologies with respect to their strategic and academic goals. The sheer volume of products available for educational use can be overwhelming, and it is often difficult to discern their redundancy, their usefulness, and their efficiency. Despite the promises touted by the “next big thing,” it is prudent to thoroughly explore, investigate, and research the plethora of tools to find those that will provide lasting opportunities for academic and professional growth and enrichment. Among the tools arising from the myriad educational technologies is the electronic portfolio (eportfolio). 

ePortfolio is a transformative instrument whose time has come. Born from the profoundly significant pen and parchment portfolio that required the collection, reflection, and revision of art, writing, and music, eportfolio—coupled with deliberate, learning-centered pedagogies—has increasingly found its place as a dynamic vehicle for student learning, professional development, and programmatic assessment. With over 50% of students in higher education in the US reportedly using eportfolios last year (AAEEBL, 2014), it is becoming apparent that more individual faculty, educational departments, and academic and professional programs are adopting the use of eportfolios as a practical means to implement and document high-impact educational practices across the disciplines (Kuh, 2008).

Invitation to Submit Proposals

The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) in the Office of the Vice President for Instruction at the University of Georgia is pleased to host the 2014 Southeast Regional Conference of the Association for Authentic, Experiential, and Evidence-Based Learning (AAEEBL) in which participants will engage in conversations and presentations centered around the conceptions, misconceptions and best practices for using portfolios.

The CTL Conference Committee invites proposals that address the “whys” and “hows” of eportfolios, using the following questions to frame our discussions:

  • Why would I use eportfolios?
  • What is the pedagogical value of using eportfolios?
  • What is the practical value of using eportfolios?
  • What are the benefits of using eportfolios in different disciplines?
  • How do eportfolios benefit interdisciplinary and/or interprofessional educational endeavors?
  • How can eportfolios provide qualitative assessment data for student and/or programmatic evaluation?
  • How do I use eportfolios?
  • What can eportfolios do? What can’t eportfolios do?
  • How do I begin using eportfolios and what is the time investment?
  • How do I grade student eportfolios?
  • What is the best way to use eportfolios to optimize student learning?
  • How do I know if eportfolios are working? 

Types of Sessions

  1. Poster Session -- The conference committee encourages proposals for interactive and dynamic poster sessions that include eportfolio assignments and evaluation methodologies and that feature displays of completed and in-progress eportfolios. Students are welcome to attend with faculty presenters to showcase their eportfolios and to answer questions regarding the eportfolio process from the student perspective.
  2. Ignite Session -- Ignite sessions are short, punchy, 5-minute presentations, with slides that advance every 15 seconds, delivered one presentation after the other. (Please visit for examples.) Please note that these sessions are NOT simply “rapid-fire” PowerPoint presentations; instead, they are thought-provoking, image-intense expositions, intended to produce energy, spark ideas, and inspire dialogue (similar in format to a TEDTalk). The ignite sessions will be followed by informal lunchtime discussion opportunities with the presenters. If selected to conduct an ignite session, presenters will be provided with guidance on the creation of their presentation materials.
  3. Instructional Session  -- The 50-minute long instructional sessions will be presented as highly interactive workshops in which participants will engage in the exploration of the uses, functionality, and/or best practices of eportfolios. Instructional sessions should highlight both the whys and the hows of eportfolio through the active involvement of participants with both eportfolio pedagogy and technology. These objective-based presentations should actively engage and provide a clear take-away for participants.
CFP Submission Deadline: October 6 2014
Download a flyer for AAEEBL Southeast Regional 2014 at UGA
Early-bird registration discount in effect through October 20, 2014

Moving the Needle from Faculty "Buy-In" to Meaningful Engagement

Kate McConnell, Assistant Director, Office of Assessment and Evaluation, Virginia Tech
Higher education is awash with educational silver bullets whose proponents promise nothing short of a learning revolution on our campuses if we buy into the "next big thing".  ePortfolios - as both a pedagogical approach and technological tool - have matured beyond the initial infatuation phase, demonstrating strong staying power. However, on many of our campuses, ePortfolio successes remain the purview of our "early adopters" - those faculty who, almost by natural inclination, bought into the concept of ePortfolios and ran with it to great personal success with their students.  This keynote will address how to move beyond the usual suspects in ePortfolio adoption and create the right campus conditions for engaging more faculty in more meaningful ways.  

University of Georgia Lunch Plenary Panelists

The Ecology of ePortfolios in UGA Writing

Deborah Miller
Associate Director, First Year Composition
Christy Desmet
Director, First Year Composition
Ron Balthazor
Developer and Instructor
Elizabeth Davis
Coordinator, Writing Certificate Program

This panel will provide an overview of a programmatic approach to using ePortfolios for writing pedagogy and assessment at the University of Georgia over the last decade. In 2005, the First-year Composition (FYC) program instituted a program-wide use of portfolios, drawing on pedagogical best practices for writing instruction. The Writing Certificate Program (WCP), which was launched in 2008, presented the opportunity to use ePortfolios as a capstone for a program of writing intensive courses and drew on the ePortfolio practices developed in FYC. The panel will offer a broad introduction to the use of ePortfolio from various perspectives (students, instructors, program administrators, assessment officers) to address the theory and praxis of ePortfolios.

Closing Keynote 

Fostering Culture Change: The Recipe for a Successful ePortfolio Program

Gail Ring
, Director, ePortfolio Program, Clemson University

"Of course I don’t have the exact recipe, but there are some key ingredients that are essential for successful institutional implementation. These key ingredients include engaged faculty, visible and supportive administration, and a curriculum that supports learner-centered pedagogy.  In this talk I will discuss the strategies for implementing ePortfolios into an institution that leverages a combination of these ingredients based on 15 years of active study and practice in the use of ePortfolios at research 1 Universities. The potential benefits of an ePortfolio are many. Among the most important involves encouraging students to synthesize their curricular and co-curricular experiences resulting in a richer understanding of the connections between their lives, education, and paths to knowledge. This transformative experience requires engaged faculty who will scaffold students in the critical reflection essential to this process. If ePortfolios are to be sustainable, professional development opportunities need to occur that help faculty develop strategies that facilitate ePortfolio pedagogy as a high-impact practice. Equally essential is the support of an administration that values ePortfolios beyond its role as an assessment tool. Mixing these ingredients successfully fosters an ePortfolio culture that becomes integrated into the culture of the entire institution."

Conference Quick Links

NoteIn order to submit a proposal or to register to attend an event, it is necessary to first register at the AAEEBL Community Online site. Why? This helps AAEEBL, as a non-profit, to keep records on site usage. Behind the scenes, the site operates dynamically and assists you by auto-filling fields when you submit a proposal or registration for an event.

Complete AAEEBL Community Online registration prior to proposal submission or event registration.


Refer to the CFP at the Conference website to guide your proposal writing. 
You will be notified in mid-September 2014 about the status of your proposal.

After you submit your proposal, make sure you look at the acknowledgement screen immediately after submission, and print that if you need a record.

When filling out the proposal, please note instructions to the left when you mouseover the field name.

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