May 27, 2005

Political motivations behind the interoperable ePortfolio

Follow-up to What are ePortfolios for? from Transversality - Robert O'Toole

A speculation on the political reasons behind central government investment in the development of interoperable ePortfolios.

If a government were struggling with the task of enforcing quality control over a sprawling range of education providers, each intent upon hiding in its own obscure curricula and awards regime, interoperable lifetime ePortfolios might seem like a good thing. If a student were to present an ePortfolio to a prospective employer, in theory they would show more interest if it contained course transcript details that actually explained the meaning of a qualification. One could argue that the market would then reward education suppliers who are able to clearly state that a student has gained a useful set of skills and knowledge at a meaningfully quantifiable level, thus doing the QA work for free.

Or alternatively, the education suppliers might just become better at spinning a line when they are required to state what their students are doing, thus diverting further resources away from the much more difficult task of actually providing good education.

A more likely outcome is that lots of money will be sunk into technical development work for something that no one actually wants. Perhaps the money would be better spent on training people with the skills that they require to articulate their own education and training histories directly.

Am I cynical or what?

- 2 comments by 2 or more people Not publicly viewable

  1. Robert O'Toole

    Do you think they want to add the ePortfolio to our identity cards?

    27 May 2005, 11:07

  2. The idea of an student (personal?!) record of achievement that builds itself from diverse university databases – whether the students wants such a collection or not – is to be resisted!
    We dont want an anti-creative clone machine!

    27 May 2005, 13:57

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