Further to my comment in an e-portfolio CoP discussion on Cloudworks (http://cloudworks.ac.uk/cloud/view/5020 7 April 2011), a colleague raised a question about whether presentation tools can be an aid to reflection. This, led her to wonder about the distinction between reflection and presentation when developing e-portfolio practices. Is there that much of a distinction between reflection and presention?
Maybe there is something like a reflective presentation: i.e. you present to yourself. For this, nothing fancy is needed. MSWord will do fine: keeping a diary. However, as Gordon Joyes suggested in a subsequent comment, the PLE approach does require a fair level of digital literacy.
If I was starting off as a student I think the 2 things I would want to be told about are
- bookmarking tools (Delicious, Bibsonomy…); and
- reference managers (EndNote, Zotero…).
Although, Alan Cann has written about the challenges of using such tools in undergraduate
teaching (e.g. http://scienceoftheinvisible.blogspot.com/2010/03/begin-beyond.html).
For the more visually inclined a photo sharing site would also be important (Flickr, Picasa…); maybe video (Vimeo, YouTube…).
On top of that all you need is a word processor to pull selected bits together. Master the WP and move on to a blog or wiki (WordPress, PBWorks…). Blackboard? Less said the better, though some people do like that it is a walled garden.