For your Play-testing 2 assignment, you will play with a variety of tools that you might use to create your own ePortoflio. Educators use many different web-based tools to house their portfolio thinking, including blogs, wikis, websites and proprietary platforms such as Foliotek. For this play-testing assignment, you will not include blogs because you play-tested that technology last week. Play around with any other technologies as you are exploring; however, you may consider how blogs could be used to create an eportfolio when you make your Reflection Post this week. You can and should explore the many free tools available as you make a decision about where you will host your own ePortfolio:
- Wikis – A wiki is a website that many people can edit. Most have controls so that the owner of the wiki can determine who can edit the page and who can just view the page. Many free wikis can be found through a Google search. Some are free to educators and their students.
- Websites – You can use any of a broad array of creation and hosting tools that fit into this category. Free sites, such as Weebly or Google Sites, can do both. These online tools offer point-and-click design templates and content creation. Some might have ads or unwanted content, however. Those of you with more technical proficiency might prefer to obtain your own domain and an HTML editor such as Dreamweaver or code your site with HTML to create your ePortfolio.
- Proprietary tools – ePortfolio vendors (developers and sellers of proprietary software specifically for eportfolio creation, dissemination, and collection) often provide free trials to allow for play or tutorial videos that describe that wondrous capabilities of their tools (recognize that there’s some bias in their descriptions); these can be found with a Google search.
Your Play-testing 2 assignment is to:
- Explore a variety of ePortfolio tool options such as wikis, websites or proprietary platforms.
- Create something. You can begin building your portfolio or just play around with the tool but you will need to post a link on your blog to something that you created this week.
- Identify affordances. In your blog post, write about the affordances of the tools you explored. Consider how and why that tool might be the best choice for you.
- Consider context. Would you make a different choice of tool if you were asking your students to create an ePortfolio? Why or why not? Discuss the affordances of these tools for others in different contexts.
I created accounts with Wix, Wikispace, and Weebly and explored through the tools within each. I created a Gmail account, so I can post my final eportfolio assignment to Google docs. Within the Google account, I created my profile, but I am still learning my way through it.
I have decided to choose weebly.com as the home for my eportfolio, so I went back into my blog and updated a post with the correct eportfolio site.
Before this semester, my knowledge of technology tools was working with Microsoft Word and Power-Point presentations, AOL, Facebook, Pinterest and using the apps feature on my iphone.
In doing this assignment, I first needed to understand the definition of the word “affordance” because it was an unfamiliar term. I used the following site to get my start.
The following definition came from the site above:
According to Norman (1988) an affordance is the design aspect of an object which suggests how the object should be used; a visual clue to its function and use. Norman thus defines an affordance as something of both actual and perceived properties. The affordance of a ball is both its round shape, physical material, bouncability, etc. (its actual properties) as well as the perceived suggestion as to how the ball should be used (its perceived properties). When actual and perceived properties are combined, an affordance emerges as a relationship that holds between the object and the individual that is acting on the object (Norman 1999).
With that definition in mind, I think the affordance of the tool is ……….workability.
I found the weebly web site easier to navigate through with the ability to create pages upon the first trial. This was not the case with the wikispace that I had initially created. I would suggest weebly over wikispace to use for students, but there may be others that are better and I will continue my investigations.