SLP's - Review Needed Practice and Portfolio ZAP 101 - 104

Introduction

EPortfolio’s and Student Learning Plans

Objectives: As part of the Associate Degrees, you will be required to develop an online portfolio, or ePortfolio, using WordPress that was introduced in ZAP 101, in Week 1. This module is part of ZAP102, which forms part of another practice and portfolio. Following on from the initial setting up of your WordPress portfolio, we now want you to be able to extend on what you have learned.

The core objectives of this module are that students will be able to:

  • Extend on the development of their portfolios
  • Understand the theory underpinning the development of student learning plans
  • Draft a student learning plan that details your strengths and current areas for development - based on reflections, skills audits and learning activities that you have done so far
  • Upload your learning plan with any supporting documents to your WordPress portfolio
This Module: The purpose of this module is to extend on your portfolio development and introduce you to student learning plans. It focusses on what they are, why they are important, and how to engage with them. Students will learn the underlying theory behind the development of learning plans, and how these are useful tools for reflection and monitoring progress of goals. The module further guides students in how to develop a learning plan that is tailored to their own needs. It contains links to templates to choose from, and additional resources if students opt to create their own.

Student learning plans may be personalised in their overall style and format, provided that they detail:

  • Strengths
  • Current areas for development
  • Goals
  • Actions to achieve goals set including with timeframes

Outcomes:

Having completed this module, participants will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the theory behind developing student learning plans
  • Demonstrate knowledge of how to apply theory to practice

The main topics to cover in your learning plan are about what you are good at, so what you do well. What lessons you have learned from the Associate Degree study so far – including successes and challenges. It is important to include what areas you have identified to improve on – sometimes called ‘targets’ and have some timeframes around these. So, set some goals in your learning plan and reflect on these over time. The reason for individual student learning plans is to encourage reflection on where you are now and to set goals. This is so you can reflect on your progress over time. For this module, we encourage students to use the learning plan to inform discussion and for future review when talking with teachers and tutors.

Students will need to create a section within their E-Portfolio for any action plans or interim plans within the Assessments page/tab. Following this, they will need to upload the learning plan and any other relevant supporting documents in this section. The supporting documents will demonstrate how you are engaged in ongoing planning, development, and reflection.

Additionally, supporting documents will show that you can manage tools, techniques and strategies for planning and problem solving. For example, some supporting documents may include screen shots or photographs of completed self-assessments, google forms and documents, or learning activities. Or they may be timelines for completing additional modules if that is a gap that you have identified.

Student Learning Plans

Introduction

Individual Learning Plans (ILP’s) are designed to encourage learners to reflect on where they are ‘now’, set personal learning goals and think about their progress. Each stage of this process requires the student to think analytically about their learning journey so it may be advisable to discuss this with a teacher or tutor before writing your ILP (or student learning plan). Some key questions to ask may be:

  • What makes an effective learner? What sorts of skills and attributes do they reflect? Do you have these skills and attributes or do you need to work on any areas?
  • What are your personal learning goals? How will you plan to achieve them?
  • How is study in the Associate Degree program different from your previous studies? What does this mean for your development? Do you need support in any areas?
  • How do you feel your first year will work out/is working out? Is there anything you can see that you can do now to better ensure your learning journey is enjoyable and beneficial?
  • What do you think second year will be like? Do you think it will be different to the first year? If yes, in what ways? And what does this mean for you going forward?
  • Thinking back on your previous studies, what were your strengths? What did you find most challenging? What might you plan for yourself to manage and what can you do or request to make the experience more fulfilling?

What are personal learning goals and why are they important?

Skills and Attributes of Effective Learners

There are a number of different learner profiles available online to guide you in becoming an effective learner. The following diagram/table is one of many, but has a broad coverage of some of the key learner attributes.

For this course, students will certainly need to be active and self-motivated in completing learning activities (particularly those involving reflection), attending tutorials and workshops and working on assessment pieces. This means that the learner attributes of ‘commitment’ and ‘independence’ are of high importance. Regular support is provided but due to the blended learning approach and the amount of online material, including online tutorials, self-motivation is critical. If you are unsure about your capacity to be a committed and independent learner you may want to note this in your learning plan with suggested strategies of how you might address this. And/or discuss with your teacher or tutor.

It would be worthwhile to reflect on the other learner attributes in the diagram and think about how having (or not having these) may impact on your studies and how you can plan around this. Or do your own research on other learner attributes as these can have a slightly different perspective or framework, such as that depicted in the picture below.

Please proceed to part 2 of this module.

Credits:

Created with images by stephan5_ksk - "sunset sunrise sunlight" • Unsplash - "field grass crop" • samzmurchyk - "water nature moss" • Unsplash - "path way track" • derwiki - "dusk bryce canyon utah" • Unsplash - "barley cereal grain"

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