Who Owns the Portfolio? Who Owns the Ideas?

In a recent class session we discussed who owns the learning portfolio. That was such an interesting discussion because we talked about the fact that an educational institution may own the data, but the learning, and intellectual property should belong to the student.

There is the ongoing problem of student data and creative products being lost when they leave the school if they do not purposefully transfer the data files somewhere. Herein lies the issue of using and LMS portfolio or school subscription cloud storage like Google Drive. Some schools are overcoming that problem by providing students with their own domain. When they leave an institution or graduate, their digital products can go with them. Programs like The Domain of One’s Own Initiative at UMW encourages students to maintain portfolio of artifacts and posts from their learning career.

This is a novel solution for a true problem!

Dr. Harapnuik takes this idea a step further in the Who Owns the Portfolio post. He suggests that more than the ownership of data, it is the ownership of ideas that is more important.

I thoroughly enjoyed the opinion article by Andrew Rikard Do I Own My Domain If You Grade It? He described how some teachers and students used the digital platform very similar to traditional classroom structure, giving an assignment and asking the students to post it int their domain.

This method very often lacks authenticity as the students are not choosing what belongs in their portfolio. I experienced a little bit of this in the previous class when I posted my work on my ePortfolio. While I believed in the quality of my work, I did not believe that anyone would be interested enough to read it. I honestly edited out a little bit of my authenticity in one post.

So if students are choosing what they want to post in their domain, as we are with our blog posts in this class, then there is built-in choice, ownership, voice and authenticity. As always, I am trying to connect this learning to my current role and imagine how elementary teachers might be able to tie in more choice, ownership, voice and authenticity in the classroom. I will continue to explore this idea.

Also I’m still mulling over this idea about ownership of ideas. Especially now when we have a barrage of information from so many sources, I can see how knowing or remembering where an idea came from can be a challenge. Our ideas are formed by a combination of information and experiences. Sometimes we may believe we have an idea of our own when in reality, it’s a twist on something we have heard or read or seen somewhere before. I do not believe at all that this takes away from the authenticity or the value of the learning.

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