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A Couple of Presentations

I’ve been invited to talk about Macaulay’s eportfolios (from different perspectives) at two upcoming conferences.

The first one is coming up soon (next week), in Delhi, NY. SUNY Delhi’s annual 2-3-98 Conference is focused this year on “Technology During an Economic Crisis, The Benefits of Open Sourcing.” So that’s a talk mainly about the financial advantages of using WordPress for eportfolios. Those advantages are easy to describe–so I’m going to go over them quickly and clearly, and then turn to my own real area of expertise and my own real interest–the pedagogical advantages. I think the financial benefits are evident–but they’re really fed by, enhanced by, the instructional benefits. It’s not just that WordPress is free (like a free puppy, but still). It’s free and superior to many of the paid, proprietary, platforms.

That’s a theme I’ll pick up in more detail at the second conference, the NERCOMP SIG “Open Source Eportfolio Solutions.” With an even briefer nod to financial advantages there, I’m going to talk about flexibility for students and faculty, the ability to customize and (re)design, and to add functions (and degrees of openness) as needed for pedagogical purposes, and on a timeline that works for our faculty and students, rather than a corporation looking to maximize returns for shareholders. There’s a real advantage in being small and thinking big–which I think is the approach we’re using–rather than being big but thinking small, which is too often the approach in proprietary platforms for instructional technology.

Registration for both conferences is open–and not expensive–and I’m looking forward to speaking and hearing from the other speakers and participants at both of them!

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