What is a Learning Portfolio?
A purposeful collection of student learning that exhibits the student’s efforts and achievements in a specific course or project.
How can Learning Portfolios be used?
Portfolios are gaining popularity in College and University education as a means for students to demonstrate the knowledge and abilities they have acquired from a specific activity (e.g. participation in service). Proof of this can be found at http://www.aaeebl.org
What goes into a Service Learning Portfolio?
Documents pertaining to the processes involved in the project, as well as evidence of the project’s outcomes. For example:
– Service training
– Journals or logs
– Relevant academic work
– Media coverage (including articles in the campus newspaper or website
– Evaluations by community members and instructors
– Organizational brochures or other information
– Plan for action research or other future projects, etc.
– Reflections that document the learning process. This could include an understanding of service learning and the student’s philosophy regarding the experience.
Benefits of a Service Learning Portfolio
- Allows the learner to demonstrate learning to the outside world; the Portfolio can become a life-long learning tool for the student’s own purpose or to showcase learning to future employers.
- The learner becomes more aware of learning in the real world as they reflect and document the learning experiences that take place in the organization or business involved.
- Learning in a social context is recognized; sharing with groups or doing collaborative projects is valued and documented.
- Students have an opportunity to reflect on who they are as a person, learning lessons from their own experiences and seeing changes and growth within themselves.
For more information on service learning check out: The Complete Guide to Service Learning
Catherine Berger Kaye (2004) Free Spirit Publishing www.freespirit.com