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5 Tips for Creating Student Portfolios with Otus

In the age of blended classrooms and digital learning, student portfolio have become super popular. Digital student portfolios can highlight work students are proud of and ready to share with others. In the past, portfolios were often a tangible collection of student work in a binder or folder. The Otus Student Performance Platform makes creating student portfolios easy and efficient. Teachers or students simply “star” assessments and activities they want to add to their portfolio.

If you haven’t heard of Otus before, it’s a student performance platform that combines the power of lots of favorite EdTech tools. Otus provides a space for a classroom/learning management system, easy access to assessment management tools, and a full data warehouse – so this means that some of the features you love in other tools all come together in one place with Otus. The team at Otus has also created a tool for student video responses so students can share their thinking and show what they know through the power of video.

Tips for Creating Student Portfolios with Otus

Using student portfolios is a great way to showcase and celebrate student creations. The team at Otus created this list of tips to help make the case for the power of creating student portfolios in the classroom. They’ve included the effect size on student learning for each category as researched by John Hattie of the Visible Learning Institute. If you aren’t familiar with Hattie’s work you can check it out here. With this criteria,  a score above a 0.4 has the greatest impact of student learning.

Student Goal Setting (.5)

Ask your students to use data to determine three skills-based or standard-aligned goals for themselves as learners. The goals should be skills-based in order to make them applicable to as many content areas as possible. Students can then document their rise towards meeting their goals in all of their classes by adding examples of work that show growth to their portfolio.

Teacher Student Feedback (.75)

As you assess your students’ work, add items to their portfolios with actionable feedback. You can star an assignment and add the item to the student’s portfolio with your feedback so when the student tries another strategy you can add the new item with new feedback to keep the #FormativeTech loop going.

Student self-reporting of grades/mastery level (1.44)

Have students assess their own work using a rubric that you have co-created with them. Students can do this a few ways including digitally and on paper. They can also create and upload a video, or use another medium to add their self-assessment to their portfolios.

5 Tips for Creating Student Portfolios with Otus

Examples of mastery learning (.58)

When students are able to see examples of work at different levels (approaching, meets, exceeds standards) they are able to better understand what is expected of them. You might use this year’s student portfolios to help inform next year’s students of expectations.

School-home communication (.52)

Student portfolios can promote the school-home relationship as they provide more than just a grade. Student portfolios become the vehicle for driving parent/teacher conferences and encourage consistent conversation between families, teachers, and students.

As you create digital student portfolios with your class this year, check out Otus and their resources for getting started!

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Blog Author and EdTech Consultant Dr. Monica Burns

Monica Burns

Dr. Monica Burns is a former classroom teacher, Author, Speaker, and Curriculum & EdTech Consultant. Visit her site for more ideas on how to become a tech-savvy teacher.

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