I don’t enjoy making the folder: secondary students’ views of portfolios in technology education
online resourceposted on 05.06.2007, 14:38 by Malcolm Welch, David Barlex, Krista Taylor
This paper will describe a research study that investigated students’ experiences with the use of design portfolios in their technology education. The research builds on previous work by the first two authors that investigated the use of portfolios by professional designers, teacher educators and secondary school teachers working in England and Canada. Separate focus group interviews were conducted in England with one group of Year 10 boys in a technology college and one group of Year 10 girls in a technology college. Questions asked of participants focused on definitions and the advantages and disadvantages of using a portfolio, as well as students understanding of the purposes of a portfolio. Audiotapes of the interviews were transcribed verbatim. Analysis of the data involved thematic analysis and concept analysis. Analysis of the data has revealed that secondary school students participating in this study regard the portfolio as a burden requiring the production of materials that do little to enable the generation and development of ideas, and is driven by the assessment needs of the teacher rather than the learning needs of the student. Of particular interest is the view of those students who experience difficulty sketching and writing, for whom the design portfolio is seen as counterproductive in terms of enhancing their confidence and creativity. The paper will end with suggestions for using various types of portfolios to enable students to be creative through designing.
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