Keynote speakers

Day 1: Monday, 21 March 2016

Dr Helen Barrett

helen_barrettIn 2005, Dr Helen Barrett retired from the faculty of the College of Education at the University of Alaska Anchorage and is now living in the Seattle area. She has been researching strategies and technologies for ePortfolios since 1991, publishing a web site (http://electronicportfolios.org/), chapters in several books on ePortfolios and numerous articles. She worked with the International Society for Technology in Education between 2001 and early 2005, providing training and technical assistance on ePortfolios for teacher education programmes throughout the US under a federal PT3 grant. In 2005, Dr Barrett became the Research Project Director for the REFLECT Initiative, a two-year research project, underwritten by TaskStream, to assess the impact of ePortfolios on student learning, motivation and engagement in secondary schools. Dr Barrett is currently doing research for a book on interactive ePortfolios to be published online. She has been an adjunct faculty member for Seattle Pacific University, where she taught about issues and advances in educational technology. Her international consulting focuses on the integration of ePortfolios for learning and digital storytelling in K-12 schools and higher education. She is an Apple Distinguished Educator.

At the European ePortfolio Conference in Maastricht, October 2007, Dr Barrett received the first EIFEL Lifetime Achievement Award for her contribution to ePortfolio research and development. In 2011, she established the REAL ePortfolio Academy for K-12 teachers, providing online courses for individuals and assessment/planning support for K-12 institutions.

Keynote abstract: Balancing the two faces of ePortfolios

In her keynote address, Helen will focus on the two main approaches to ePortfolio development: portfolio as process/workspace (supporting learning and reflection) and portfolio as product/showcase (supporting accountability and self-marketing/employment). She will provide a balanced framework for developing ePortfolios, especially using mobile devices that support lifelong learning, with the essential elements of reflection and intrinsic motivation. Helen will also explore the two conflicting paradigms of assessment according to Peter Ewing (accountability versus improvement) as applied to ePortfolio development.

For presentation and resources, go to: sites.google.com/site/dublineportfolios/

Day 2: Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Dr Michael Seery

Michael Seery is a Reader in Chemistry Education at the School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh. His current interests focus on prior knowledge and cognitive load in chemistry and reducing this load through various teaching strategies, including technology-enhanced learning. He has studied the performance of chemistry students on the basis of their prior knowledge, and this work is leading him into the area of learning analytics.

Michael was the winner of the 2012 Royal Society of Chemistry Higher Education Teaching Award for his work in the use of e-learning in the teaching of physical chemistry. He was previously awarded the Irish Learning Technology Association Jennifer Burke Award and a National Academy for Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (NAIRTL) Teaching Excellence Award. He is Chair-Elect of the editorial board of Education in Chemistry and is Guest Editor for a 2013 Special Issue of Chemistry Education Research and Practice with the theme of technology in chemistry teaching. He writes about the use of technology in chemistry education at www.michaelseery.com.

Keynote abstract: Documenting learning with ePortfolios: blurring personal and professional

Students attend university with the purpose of obtaining a degree; a document that outlines their performance in various academic subjects. However, learning at university expands beyond this certification, blurring the boundary of professional and personal. Many of these learning experiences outside the formal assessment process are never documented because of their transience or perceived lack of merit. Paradoxically, many of these experiences are also most informative to employers because they represent the whole individual, rather than a focus on academic capacity.

This presentation will argue that we should enable students to draw on these experiences so that they may represent their learning at university in a more holistic way. To achieve this, the presentation will draw on my own experiences in completing an ePortfolio that documented assessment and reflection on learning. This will be followed by a description of two projects currently underway, both of which aim to translate these experiences to undergraduate teaching. They involve encouraging student reflection while being exposed to new cultural experiences on placement, and the use of badges to document learning on a more granular level than module marks. A discussion with attendees will include what learning we aim to document and what form ePortfolios can take in our practice.

Day 3: Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Helen Beetham

helen_beethamHelen Beetham is a writer, researcher and adviser on e-learning issues and a regular keynote speaker across the English-speaking world. As a long-standing consultant to the Jisc e-learning programme, she has written influential reports on ePortfolios, digital literacy, open education and digital organisations. Helen was a member of the UK Government’s Beyond Current Horizons programme on educational futures and has led futures thinking initiatives for a number of global universities and national bodies.
Most recently, she has completed a year-long study on the expectations and experiences of today’s ‘digital students’ and designed a digital capabilities framework for use across education sectors. Helen has co-authored volumes Rethinking Pedagogy for a Digital Age and Rethinking Learning for a Digital Age (both Routledge), which are standard texts on PGCert and Masters’ courses in Education. Tweets @helenbeetham. Blogs (currently) at http://digitalstudent.jiscinvolve.org/wp/ and http://digitalcapability.jiscinvolve.org/wp/.

Keynote abstract: Digital identities: resources for uncertain futures?

ePortfolios are important sites of digital identity work. They allow us to curate aspects of ourselves in a digital space; to narrate a particular story of who we are and how we came to be that way; and to present a capable persona. We rightly encourage students to develop digital identities as resources they can draw on for their working futures. But if the future of work is radically uncertain, do we know what kinds of persona will be capable there? And if our identities are increasingly scattered across different digital sites and data streams, what happens to ideas of coherence, authenticity and self-actualisation? This keynote draws on recent work to develop a ‘digital capabilities framework’ for education, in which digital identity and wellbeing are seen as critical to the learning experience. It also asks whether we can be fully in control of our digital identities, and how we might embrace the ‘strange’ (Barnet) and the ‘uncanny’ (Bayne), as well as the ‘uncertain’, in our digital education practices.


Day 1 Speakers

Speaker: Dr Siobhán O’Sullivan
Dr Siobhán O’Sullivan has a BSc (Honours) and PhD in Biochemistry and Microbiology. Siobhán completed a Certificate and Diploma in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education and in 2007, she graduated with a 1st class Honours MA in Teaching and Learning from University College Cork. Formerly the Curriculum Development Manager of Structured PhD education in Life Sciences, at Cork Institute of Technology, she is now a Project Manager in the Teaching and Learning Unit, where her project interest to date is the development of an institute-wide Staff Induction programme. Siobhán worked for several years as an educational consultant in addition to curriculum development for teacher science education and professional development. She has published widely on the potential of information technology in the classroom, in continuing professional development and in online learning. Most recently, her research has centered on the effective use of Web 2.0 tools in teaching and learning, the potential use of ePortfolios in documenting learning, reflective practice and the engagement of students in learning. She was shortlisted as a finalist in 2010 for the Jennifer Burke Award for Innovation in Teaching and Learning.

Abstract: The use of ePortfolios as a measurement of the learning journey in undergraduate and graduate education; a personal reflection
Portfolio implementations are best viewed as a continuum; they are work in progress. They evolve over a period of time through group interaction and discourse. The expressions of learning in an ePortfolio can range from lower-order thinking skills such as a PowerPoint presentation or a written report, to higher-order thinking skills as seen in a wiki, a reflective journal or a podcast.
To align with learning, ePortfolios offer students the opportunity to self-assess and record learning experiences from a lifelong learning perspective. As colleges implement ePortfolios, it will be important to do more than just replicate their paper-based predecessors or adopt a system where a folder is created to store copies of static non-evolving papers. ePortfolios align with constructivist theories in that students construct their own portfolio, take charge of what it contains, reflect on what makes an entry good or better than others, and use this information to make improvements or changes. As lecturers or mentors/supervisors advise on content, the student takes on the responsibility of collecting materials, selecting what is relevant and reflecting on the content. This presentation reviews and explores the potential use of ePortfolios in undergraduate courses and postgraduate research training. It will also examine the student experience and feedback of the process. We will question the effective use of ePortfolios in graduate education and review how graduate attributes (for example, communication skills, thinking, learning to learn and professional skills) can be documented in an ePortfolio and how these skills can be measured and assessed.
Siobhán first began working with students in the development of ePortfolios in 2010. It began as introducing a reflective piece on a course as the course developed to developing a student portfolio as a rich reservoir of student materials that could be used to reflect student work and achievements. Over time, the interest grew and expanded to her working with various groups at different stages in the education journey. She has been invited to discuss her work in this area with various colleges and universities in Ireland and abroad where she has openly shared her experiences, both good and bad, in an effort to improve the ePortfolio process for both teachers and students. This presentation reflects her learning journey in the development and implementation of ePortfolios in higher education.

Speaker: Eva Kilar
Eva has been working the field of adult training in Dublin for the last 8 years. Prior to that, she was an English primary and secondary state school teacher for a number of years in Poland. She has been delivering teacher training courses for European teachers in Ireland and Spain. Her main expertise would be mobile learning and ICT integration in the ESL syllabus. She holds a DIT MSc degree in Applied eLearning and an MA and BA in TESOL and Translation.

Abstract: Sharing practice: Weebly ePortfolio
As part of ePortfolio planning and preparation, it is vital to decide on the tool that is to be used. This presentation focuses on showing some of the typical features of Weebly as an ePortfolio tool. It outlines steps to take in the ePortfolio preparation and shows how to make it an effective tool showing professional development.

Speaker: Pat Walsh
Pat has been working as a Technical Officer in Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) since 2005. From 2013-2014, as part of his MSc research project, he explored the area of learning analytics with a view to evaluating the data analytic features available within the institute’s learning management system (LMS). During this time, he used the Yola platform to chart his professional development and learning experience.

Abstract: Sharing practice: Yola ePortfolio
Yola was used to chart Pat’s learning progression during his MSc in Applied eLearning in DIT. He evaluated the advantages and disadvantages of different ePortfolio platform solutions before deciding on the Yola platform. This platform provided him with a user-friendly means of capturing his thoughts and reflections through multiple forms of media, such as video, blogs, wikis, text and discussion forums. The ability of Yola to seamlessly integrate with other eLearning tools provided an ideal platform to capture his own learning experience.

Speaker: Dr Bettie Higgs
Dr Bettie Higgs has recently retired as Senior Lecturer in Geosciences and Co-Director of the Teaching and Learning Centre in University College Cork (UCC). She was Vice President for Teaching and Learning at UCC from 2013-2014, and a board member of the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning from 2012-2016. She is currently Vice President of the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and a member of the Preparation for Professional Practice (ePrePP) Executive Team.

Abstract: Using ePortfolios in students’ preparation for professional practice: lessons from the ePrepp project
The ePrepp project is a multi-discipline initiative in the medical and health sciences and has several objectives. At the heart of the project is the objective of inter-professional education and engaging students in inter-professional learning. This is achieved by providing appropriate opportunities for critical reflection, formative assessment and feedback (self, peer and tutor). The ePortfolio is being piloted in multiple institutions as a tool to facilitate this, as well as fulfilling professional requirements for mapping and assessing common core competencies. The ePortfolio should not just act as a substitution for paper-based assessment and feedback but should enable enhanced and even transformed ways of knowing and behaving, evidenced in student performance.
The PebblePad ePortfolio tool has been implemented in several institutions, and student and tutor evaluations were carried out. The presentation will include a discussion of ‘What lessons have we learned in terms of choosing a suitable platform, an appropriate implementation plan, staff and student buy-in, and resources and technical help needed?’ It will also discuss ‘What affordances has the ePortfolio technology provided for enhanced student learning?’ The lessons learned are not specific to the medicine and health sciences but speak to all disciplines.
The ePrepp project is supported by funding from the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning.

Speaker: Tracey Dalton
Tracey is a lecturer on the BA (Hons) Interior Design and Furniture at Dublin School of Creative Arts, Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), Grangegorman. She teaches commercial and domestic design, buildings regulations, construction studies and AutoCAD. An interest in the use of blended-learning methods through screencasting on the CAD module attracted her to pursue the MSc in Applied eLearning at DIT.
Since graduating from the BA (Hons) Environmental/Spatial Design, DIT, in 1996, Tracey has worked in the architecture and interior design industry and is also a lecturer and head of the Interior Design department at Dublin Institute of Design.

Abstract: Using WordPress on an MSc in eLearning: a tool for reflection, course delivery, peer learning and future student learning
This presentation will discuss the benefits of ePortfolios on an MSc in eLearning as a platform for reflection on weekly course delivery and as a repository for course assignments, accessible to module tutors. In addition to this, it showcases Tracey’s eLearning project about AutoCAD screencasts for her students. Reasons for using WordPress for an ePortfolio will also be discussed – assessing the benefits and challenges during set-up, what attracted her to this platform and how user friendly it is to work with. The ePortfolio also provided a mechanism for peer feedback and learning among the MSc learner group. It continues to be used by Tracey’s students as a support mechanism for the AutoCAD module, in addition to face-to-face teaching.

Speaker: Thomas Kearns
Thomas Kearns was appointed Executive Director of the Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland in April 2014. As Executive Director, Thomas is accountable for providing leadership and direction in the development and delivery of the key strategic and operational aims and objectives of the Faculty. He is accountable for the financial management of the Faculty. Thomas has extensive educational leadership, project management and research experience throughout his 35 years nursing career. Thomas is an innovative, supportive and facilitative leader and has provided leadership in relation to a large number of initiatives across RCSI and with a broad range of external partners.
In 2014, Thomas conceptualised the Overseas Aptitude test as an alternative to the adaptation assessment programme. He scoped the project and conducted the national consultation and research study that informed the development of the Aptitude test during 2015. Thomas is a member of the Rotunda Hospital Risk Committee and is a member of the RCSI/Rotunda Hospital Liaison committee.
From 2001-2014, Thomas was Education Officer and Acting Chief Education Officer in the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (formerly An Bord Altranais). Thomas conceptualised, scoped, developed and was responsible for managing the Board’s online Continuing Education CPD directory. He provided professional advice and guidance to academics, managers and clinicians. His doctorate is in the regulation of CPD and Professional Competence.
He was responsible for standard setting; approval and monitoring of all postgraduate education nationally. He was also responsible for the approval, audit and monitoring of programmes leading to registration as a psychiatric nurse, nurse prescriber, nurse tutor and public health nurse.
In 2004, he was seconded to the Department of Health and Children to project manage a review of the structure of the four-year nursing degree programme and to specifically examine the position of the 12-month rostered clinical placement within the programme. This involved collaborating with Department officials, clinical and academic partners, the regulator and the professional associations and unions.
Prior to joining the nursing board, Thomas was lecturer/course co-ordinator on two higher diploma programmes and a lecturer on the undergraduate programmes within the School of Nursing and Midwifery in University College Dublin. He was responsible for curriculum development, teaching and learning, collaborating with hospital/clinical sites, student assessment, programme evaluation and quality assurance. Thomas’s Doctorate is in the area of Competence Assessment.

Speaker: Dr Lucía Morales
Dr Lucía Morales is a lecturer in the area of Finance in the Department of Accounting and Finance at Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT). Lucía is an active researcher in the field of Financial Economics and Econometrics and also in Education. After completing her MSc in Applied eLearning at DIT, Lucía became very interested in understanding the use of technology to enhance students’ learning experience and its value to encourage lifelong learning. As a result, she decided to apply gained knowledge in the field of eLearning to support her students and to help them understand the value of reflective and critical thinking, and inquiry skills in the field of finance. Her work with students helped her to develop research papers that have been presented at international conferences and published by journals in the field.

Abstract: Sharing practice: Mahara ePortfolios
Analysing the versatility of ePortfolios
In this presentation, the use of ePortfolios to support the development of critical thinking and reflective skills will be explored. The aim of the presentation is to encourage an open dialogue among participants with the goal of sharing knowledge and experiences regarding the value that eLearning can bring to any discipline. The discussions will look at specific ePortfolios developed by students that will provide examples of learning progression and also help identify major problems faced by students when working with their ePortfolios. Through the discussions, Lucía will share some of her major research findings and offer some insights in terms of research collaborations that have helped in the development of cyclical processes that help educators assessing if ePortfolios could be used to support their own learning and teaching strategies. Overall, the presentation aims to offer a forum for discussion, reflection, feedback and critical inquiry on how ePortfolios can be further used to support students.

Speaker: Brian McGillion
Brian McGillion is a senior lecturer in Management/Strategic Management in the School of Accounting and Finance, College of Business, DIT. He has a BA in Economics, Mathematics, Statistics and Politics, an MA in Economics and an MSc in Applied eLearning. Brian has been involved fulltime in third-level learning, teaching and research for more than 30 years. He has also worked in management consultancy, living and working for extended periods in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Nigeria.

Abstract: Sharing practice: Mahara ePortfolios
Mahara for student learning
This presentation will provide an introduction to how Mahara works. Brian will present his own Mahara ePortfolio as an example. He will outline the reasons for choosing Mahara to develop his ePortfolio, and strengths and weaknesses of using Mahara.

Speaker: Dr Carina Ginty
Dr Carina Ginty is the Learning and Teaching Officer for Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT). A graduate of GMIT, NUI Galway and the Public Relations Institute of Ireland, Carina holds a PhD, an M Litt. in Education, a BBS (Hons) degree, a postgraduate Diploma in Public Relations and level 9 teaching and learning awards in Learning Technologies, Civic Engagement, and Assessment and Evaluation.

Carina transitioned from industry, where she was a marketing manager for technology companies, to higher education in 2004 and began lecturing on programmes in the School of Business and Tourism and Arts in GMIT. From 2008-2011, she managed the SIFII programme for GMIT titled Student Led Learning and Curriculum Reform and partner collaborations with NUI Galway and AIT. Major achievements included the development of an institute wide First Year Experience and student leadership programme supporting over 10,000 students to date, and a civic engagement institute learning toolkit. Following the SIFII Programme in 2011, Carina re-structured the Schools Liaison Office for GMIT, developing outreach development initiatives, marketing programmes and online learning support resources for teachers and students at second level in Ireland. In addition, she has played an active role in teaching and learning development for GMIT.

In her role as Learning and Teaching Officer for GMIT, she manages a range of projects and collaborates with other higher education institutions in Ireland and internationally and education development networks such as EDIN, LIN, SLL, EdTech and the National Forum. Since 2012, Carina has led the Connacht Ulster Alliance project on Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) with IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT (www.myexperience.ie). Major outputs to date include an RPL ePortfolio assessment tool, an information website, a level 9 training module and an online course on RPL assessment skills for higher education staff.

In 2014, Carina co-founded a national group called Student Led Learning focused on student engagement, retention and the transition to higher education. Project outputs to date are available at www.lin.ie/sll. Carina is also engaged in the development of a MOOC with eight higher education institutions in Ireland. This course helps learners transition from second level to higher education (www.getready.education).

Carina has represented GMIT at national and international conferences and committees and her current teaching and research areas include student engagement; the First Year experience; peer assisted learning, learning technologies; online learning; student-centred learning; RPL and ePortfolio tools; service learning and civic engagement.

Speaker: Gavin Clinch
After graduating from the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London, Gavin practised as an architect in the UK and Germany for 15 years. Since joining IT Sligo in 2001, he has lectured in architecture and was centrally involved in the development and professional accreditation of a number of Level 8 and 9 architecture programmes. Additionally, he was programme coordinator of the online Construction Management programme and has many years of online teaching experience.
In his current role as programme manager with the Centre for Online Learning, Gavin has responsibility for online education, blended learning, MOOC pedagogy and development, recognition of prior learning and competency-based education, online exams and digital badges.
Gavin currently leads a collaboration of seven Irish higher education institutions (HEIs) in the development of a MOOC to support the transition from second- to third-level education in Ireland.
Additional roles include:
• Chair of the institute’s Learning, Teaching and Assessment Committee
• Member of the Irish Learning Technology Association (ILTA) Steering Group
• Committee member of the European MOOCs Stakeholders Summit
• Member of the Programme Committee for MoodleMoot Ireland-UK
• National Forum associate
Email: mailto:clinch.gavin@itsligo.ie
Twitter: @gavinclinch

Abstract: Connacht Ulster Alliance (CUA – GMIT, IT Sligo and LYIT) RPL ePortfolio assessment project
This collaborative project started out with an objective to develop a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) ePortfolio tool. However, as we moved through the development and evaluation stages of the project in consultation with a range of stakeholders, the CUA RPL tool evolved into an RPL ePortfolio assessment tool. The ePortfolio works primarily as an online assessment tool, with the evidence being assessed linked to a portfolio of their work experiences and certified learning outputs. It is therefore, a departure from traditional ePortfolios. The reason for this is due to the purpose of the tool and what it needs to do to help a RPL candidate gain entry to a higher education (HE) programme at one of our three institutes of technology.

This presentation will provide an overview of the ePortfolio assessment tools development and a live demonstration of how it works from the perspectives of the RPL applicant and RPL assessor.

Speaker: Orna Farrell
Orna Farrell is academic coordinator/digital learning specialist for the BA in Humanities (online) in Dublin City University (DCU). Previously, Orna lectured in history and social science in Dublin Business School. In line with her research interest in ePortfolios, she supported and trained Dublin Business School staff and students using the Mahara ePortfolio system. Currently, Orna is pursuing a PhD in Trinity College in the School of Education. Her dissertation title is ‘An exploration of criticality, reflective learning and ePortfolios among third-level learners’. She is part of the National Institute for Digital Learning, based in DCU.
Twitter: @orna_farrell
Contact details: http://dcu.ie/openeducation/people/orna-farrell.shtml

Abstract: Critical thinking and ePortfolios (with a Mahara focus)
This presentation will explore using ePortfolios for assessment, personal development planning and employability. Orna will outline her experiences teaching, assessing and facilitating using the Mahara ePortfolio platform. She will then explore different ePortfolio activities and artefacts, marking ePortfolios, practical considerations to implementing ePortfolios in the classroom, and student and lecturer perspectives on ePortfolios.

Speaker: John Kilroy
John is a Director with Harvest and Head of Harvest’s eLearning Consultancy Division. Harvest are Ireland’s leading people development consultancies. John has been involved in the development of people and organisations for the past 10 years. He has led the development of Harvest’s eLearning division since 2011, having spent the previous three years working on design and implementation of Harvest’s virtual learning environment for client organisations. John’s main role involves partnering with Harvest clients and team members to assist them with the integration of learning technology into bespoke development programmes. John is a regular platform speaker with the Irish Institute of Training & Development (IITD) on the topic of eLearning and he recently completed an MSc in Applied eLearning with Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT). John’s main research focus is the design of social learning environments for eLearning development programmes with a particular focus on the role of ePortfolios.

Abstract: From a CV to an ePortfolio: an exploration of adult learners’ perception of the ePortfolio as a job-seeking tool (underpinned with a discussion of how the ePortfolio platform was used)
In this practical workshop, John will share some of the core findings from his recent MSc research on the use of ePortfolios as a job-seeking tool. John will then share some of the emerging trends in the use of ePortfolios in organisational development as well as the associated key features of ePortfolio tools and platforms. Participants in the workshop will also get an opportunity to review and evaluate some emerging ePortfolio tools and platforms.

Day 2 Speakers

Speaker: Dr Fiona O’Riordan
Dr Fiona O’Riordan (BABS, MBS, MEd, EdD) is Head of the Centre for Promoting Academic Excellence in Griffith College. She is also Programme Director for the MA in Training and Education and embedded awards PG Dip. in Training and Education and Special Purpose Certificate in Training and Education. Fiona is a founding member and current Organising Committee member for the International Conference for Engaging Pedagogy (ICEP), Co-Chair of the Educational Developers in Ireland Network (EDIN), Associate Member of the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, and Higher Education Colleges Association (HECA) Teaching and Learning Committee member. Her research areas include engaging pedagogy, internationalisation of higher education, the voice of educators and curriculum development.

Abstract: The use of ePortfolios as a teaching, learning and assessment tool on a professional higher-education teaching qualification
The aim of this presentation is to share our experience of using an ePortfolio as a teaching, learning and assessment tool for a Reflective Practice and Development module. This module is a 5 ECTS credit module and forms part of an MA in Training and Education, with embedded Postgraduate Diploma (60 ECTS credits) and Special Purpose Award (20 ECTS credits). The objectives of the module are to allow students to determine how their own philosophies of teaching and learning impact their pedagogy. They also learn how to become reflective and evaluative practitioners by understanding the reflective and ongoing process of their own learning and development as educators.

The module requires students to assess key professional issues as they impact their professional lives; critically reflect and evaluate their own professional practice and development; and provide evidence demonstrating the capacity to improve professional performance in the teaching and training context. By way of supporting and evidencing these outcomes, students are required to produce an ePortfolio that can be used as a tool to support their ongoing professional development throughout the programme and beyond. The model we use for the ePortfolio is a reflective portfolio. Because this ePortfolio is public rather than just a private learning diary, students are encouraged to keep a learning diary or journal to inform their reflective practice and share only edited thoughts by way of the ePortfolio. We support our students hosting their ePortfolios on WordPress but can accept any type for ePortfolio submission.

Speaker: Kevin Maye
In 1990, Kevin graduated with a Higher Certificate in Furniture Making and Design from Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT) Letterfrack. Kevin worked in industry until 1995. He then returned to GMIT Letterfrack for another two years to achieve a BSc (Hons) in Furniture Technology. Upon completion of his degree, Kevin worked in industry as a production manager of a joinery workshop and as a researcher with the Wood Technology Centre (WTC) at the University of Limerick. The main research focus of the WTC was to explore the value-added opportunities for Irish timber in the domestic market. Between 2003 and 2004, he completed a Graduate Diploma in Teacher Education (Technology) at University of Limerick.

Since 2004, Kevin has lectured full-time at GMIT Letterfrack. In 2011, he completed an MA in Higher Education at Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT). Since the start of the GMIT Letterfrack teacher education programme (BSc in Design and Technology Education), Kevin’s research focus has moved towards the study of pedagogical issues (his MA thesis was a study of reflective practice among teachers in higher education). He is currently exploring PhD research opportunities. As can be seen, Kevin is a lifelong learner and the journey continues!

Abstract: An initial teacher ePortfolio: towards a streamlined platform
The Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT) is a provider of teacher education for second-level teachers in the technical subjects Construction Studies, and Design and Communication Graphics. In line with the requirements of the Teaching Council, Ireland, GMIT facilitates student teachers to develop a professional teaching and learning portfolio. Since 2011, GMIT has researched and pioneered innovative approaches to the development of an electronic Teaching and Learning Portfolio (ePortfolio) in the contexts of e-assessment – initiatives that have been commended by the Teaching Council in their report of the programme in January 2014. The ePortfolio has a threefold purpose: to showcase teaching philosophies, innovations and resources; to act as a live teaching tool in the classroom; and to facilitate e-assessment by peers and staff. The institute currently uses Weebly and Microsoft Excel tools for these purposes. The former provides a professional showcase of learning outputs and the latter acts as a repository management system for students’ teaching resources and a platform for e-assessment.

This current action research critically examines the effectiveness of these tools from student and staff perspectives. Research methodologies include individual online (Moodle) critical reflections, questionnaire surveys and focus groups. The research finds high levels of satisfaction with both tools from staff and students alike from the perspectives of construction, accessibility, easy navigation, showcase potential, cost and effective use in the classroom. The initial feedback related to a critique of using two independent tools. However, further research suggests that students would prefer one comprehensive platform that should have two distinct functions – an open access area that presents a selection from their teaching and a secure repository for teaching resources. Examining secure cloud-based options that will act as both a showcase for work and as a resource repository will constitute the next phase/cycle of action research.

Speaker: Alison Egan
Alison is the Director of ICT and eLearning at Marino Institute of Education with an interest in all things technological and educational. She is currently studying for her PhD on technological and pedagogical uses of technologies by education students.

Abstract: Using Mahoodle in a College of Education: a work in progress
In this presentation, a small research study introducing ePortfolios to pre-service education students is reported. The technology director – the author of this work – has responsibility for increasing the use of technology across the College of Education, and the introduction of ePortfolios was part of her general strategy. The findings of a pilot study were integrated into the redesign of the introduction to, and use of, the ePortfolios with the target group of students. The evaluation of this stage of the research forms the basis for this presentation.

Speaker: Phil McGuinness
Phil works jointly with sparqs’ sector partners on a range of national projects, including the potential for a national college student survey, e-assessment in colleges and work around transitions relating to Curriculum for Excellence. He is also working on a joint project with the National Union of Students (NUS) Scotland and the National Society of Apprentices in Scotland. Previously, Phil worked as School Councils Co-ordinator at Edinburgh University Students’ Association. He is originally from South Shields and is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh and Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona. Phil joined sparqs in January 2015.

Abstract: sparqs: engaging with students as partners within ePortfolio processes
Student engagement with e-assessment, and ePortfolios in general, has to begin with the premise that students are experts in their own learning and that any serious attempt to put learners at the centre of their education must start with bringing through their voice in all aspects of their academic experience. Bringing together theories of student engagement and practical examples from the Scottish sector, this presentation aims to demonstrate methodologies of student engagement in ePortfolio design and improvement. Working with examples drawn from across Scotland’s colleges and universities, we will show where theory meets practices and the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead for student engagement with ePortfolios.

Workshop: sparqs staff/student partnership model: strategies to shape and enhance the learning experience
sparqs will lead on working through a series of examples from the Scottish sector of student engagement with ePortfolio redesign and improvement. We will also showcase a series of techniques for student engagement with technology and elearning more broadly.

Speaker: Frank Bourke
Frank is the Learning Technologist for the Irish Institute of Pharmacy (IIoP). He has over 15 years’ experience in online learning and development. He has worked as an eLearning Specialist within financial services and telecommunications industries and in education and training. He is currently managing all technical aspects of ongoing development and rollout of the assessment portion of the institute’s bespoke ePortfolio system.

Abstract: ePortfolio review: an interim report on peer-review assessment
The Irish Institute of Pharmacy’s (IIOP) ePortfolio is an online system where pharmacists log and record their ongoing continuous professional development (CPD) activity. Since 2014, pharmacists have been adding CPD cycles ahead of a scheduled yearly review of their portfolios. This statutory assessment has been designed to identify and certify pharmacists who are engaging effectively with CPD. However, given that the IIOP’s system records formal and informal learning, how can consistent assessment be applied across a stratified pharmacist landscape? Also, what does ‘effective engagement’ really mean?

The objective of this presentation is to (i) outline IIOP’s peer review approach to CPD assessment and (ii) offer provisional recommendations around the current piloting of the assessment process. Before review, the Standards Development Group (representative pharmacists with assessment experience) set minimum standards for successful demonstration of effective engagement based on automated and peer review criteria. Initial submissions are subject to automated review (quantitative assessment). Practitioners can view the expected automated review outcome by using the system’s ‘Ready Reckoner’ tool (red light, green light indicators) before finalising their submitted cycles for review. Those not meeting the requirements are sent for peer review (qualitative assessment).

Following peer review, practitioners not meeting the standard are required to amend and resubmit CPD cycles based on standardised feedback from Level One peer reviewers (matched by the system based on practice area). Level One peer reviewers can forward submissions to a Level Two peer reviewer for advice if unsure that a submission has met the agreed peer review criteria. The process also includes a final check for consistency via a sampling of peer reviews, which is conducted by the Level Two reviewer. The system sends automated e-mail notifications at key stages of the review to (i) remind participants of pending deadlines, (ii) confirm receipt of submissions and (iii) provide next steps and final outcomes.

Speaker: Orla Hanratty
Orla Hanratty has over 16 years’ experience working in higher education in Ireland. She is currently the CPD Co-ordinator in DIT’s Learning, Teaching and Technology Centre (LTTC). She teaches on many of the LTTC programmes and modules, including the Postgraduate Diploma in Third Level Learning and Teaching, the MA in Higher Education and the MSc in Applied eLearning. She also supervises postgraduate projects and theses associated with these programmes. She coordinates and teaches on the CPD ‘Learning, Teaching and Assessment’ for DIT staff and external clients. Reflective practice and the use of portfolios has been a key area of interest and research for her. She has also been involved in international projects and has been part of an international quality review team in Lithuania. She holds a BEd and MSc in IT and Education from Trinity College Dublin and is currently pursuing a doctorate in Education with Maynooth University.

Abstract: Reflective writing and ePortfolios
Reflective writing is used to evidence and often assess reflective practice. This presentation will outline one of the strategies used to introduce and support reflective writing within ePortfolios for professional development. The DIEP model of reflective writing will be outlined. It is combined with Brookfield’s (1995) four lenses approach to encourage writing that evidences critical reflection on experiences with an emphasis on identifying clear implications for future practice. Orla has been using various resources and strategies to support reflective practice through reflective writing over the years on various programmes and will share how she adapted the DIEP model to facilitate greater depth of reflective writing on components of portfolios such as Significant Incident Analysis.

Speaker: Dr Helen Barrett
In 2005, Dr Helen Barrett retired from the faculty of the College of Education at the University of Alaska Anchorage and is now living in the Seattle area. She has been researching strategies and technologies for ePortfolios since 1991, publishing a web site (http://electronicportfolios.org/), chapters in several books on ePortfolios and numerous articles. She worked with the International Society for Technology in Education between 2001 and early 2005, providing training and technical assistance on ePortfolios for teacher education programmes throughout the US under a federal PT3 grant. In 2005, Dr Barrett became the Research Project Director for the REFLECT Initiative, a two-year research project, underwritten by TaskStream, to assess the impact of ePortfolios on student learning, motivation and engagement in secondary schools.

Dr Barrett is currently doing research for a book on interactive ePortfolios to be published online. She has been an adjunct faculty member for Seattle Pacific University, where she taught about issues and advances in educational technology. Her international consulting focuses on the integration of ePortfolios for learning and digital storytelling in K-12 schools and higher education. She is an Apple Distinguished Educator.

At the European ePortfolio Conference in Maastricht, October 2007, Dr Barrett received the first EIFEL Lifetime Achievement Award for her contribution to ePortfolio research and development. In 2011, she established the REAL ePortfolio Academy for K-12 teachers, providing online courses for individuals and assessment/planning support for K-12 institutions.

Workshop: Know thyself: reflection and self-assessment in ePortfolios to support lifelong learning
In this workshop, Dr Helen Barrett will address a variety of ePortfolio learning strategies that promote lifelong learning. Drawing on various models of reflection, she will bridge theory with practical examples to support lifelong learning strategies of self-monitoring, self-awareness and self-management. Specific strategies to be shown will include reflective journals (blogs).

Workshop participants will explore ways to teach students reflection/analysis of their own learning. Participants will construct several reflective/analytic prompts that they can then take with them to use in their course(s). Strategies for evaluating student responses to the prompts will also be discussed.

Day 3 Speakers

Speaker: Kieran Lewis
Kieran is a Senior Occupational Therapist within the Disability Service in Trinity College Dublin. For the last two years, he has been a project officer with the Genio-funded project, Career Pathways. Kieran is also the lead on phase three activities within the Disability Service strategic plan, which focus on students’ transition to employment. Kieran holds a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy and is currently undertaking PhD research into the development and efficacy of an occupation-focused self-management programme. He has completed the Individual Placement and Support (IPS)-supported employment course and the Level 1 and Level 2 modules on the Sensory Integration Pathway.

Abstract: Career Pathways transition planning tool for students with disabilities
This presentation will outline the use of the Pebblepad ePortfolio system as part of the Career Pathways project within Trinity College Dublin. Career Pathways is an approach to enabling students with disabilities to manage the transition from college to employment and is a partnership between the Careers Advisory Service and Disability Service within TCD. One of the key elements of the project is facilitating students to engage in work-related experiences throughout the student journey and the logging of their personal reflections and the work-related skills that they have developed. Staff and students have designed a series of templates and other resources for the systems, which will be outlined during the presentation.

Speaker: Catherine Cronin
Catherine is an educator and researcher at NUI Galway, currently completing her PhD, which explores the use of open educational practices in higher education. Catherine’s work focuses on open education, formal/informal learning, digital and network literacies, and digital identity practices. She has also published research in the area of gender and technology. You can find out what Catherine is up to on Twitter (@catherinecronin) and in her blog (catherinecronin.wordpress.com).

Abstract: Exploring our digital identities
In this presentation, Catherine will invite us to consider our different digital identities – social, scholarly, civic, professional (or pre-professional) – and to explore how we enact and negotiate these in different online spaces. How do we negotiate the sometimes delicate balance between private and public, personal and professional, bounded and open?

Speaker: Dr Teresa Whitaker
Teresa Whitaker is Programme Director of the Master of Arts in Teaching and Learning (MATL) and the PhD programme in Hibernia College. Her background is in the social sciences and she holds a BA (Mod) degree from Trinity College and M.Soc.Sc. and PhD degrees from University College Dublin (UCD). Teresa was awarded a Faculty scholarship from the Geary Institute in UCD and a Government of Ireland postgraduate scholarship by the Irish Research Council (IRCHSS) for her PhD in sociology, which was completed in 2015. She has over 20 years of teaching and research experience in higher education. She was project officer on an EU (DG5)-funded longitudinal study on ‘Children Talking; Why do they smoke?’ She worked as a lead researcher in the National Advisory Committee on Drugs (2006–2009) whose remit is to conduct research on illicit substances and report to a cabinet committee on social inclusion.

Currently, she teaches and assesses students on the Sociology of Education and Research Methods modules in Hibernia College. She has successfully supervised many students writing their masters’ dissertations and has been involved in module and programme development with Hibernia College and St Nicholas Montessori College, Ireland (SNMCI). In common with Michelangelo (Ancora Imparo – Yet I am learning), she is committed to lifelong learning and has recently completed the Postgraduate Diploma in Arts in Training and Education with Griffith College (Level 9 NFQ). Teresa has discovered the more she learns, the more there is to learn. She has many publications in national and international journals.

Abstract: The use of reflective practice in ePortfolio development
It is argued that you cannot put an old head on young shoulders, but I wonder if you can put a young head on old shoulders by learning new ways of seeing and doing things! In this presentation, I will reflect on my journey to becoming a critically reflective practitioner. I am a programme director of a master’s programme and I tutor two online modules (Sociology of Education and Research Methods). Although I have been teaching in third-level institutions for over two decades, my journey to become a reflective practitioner started in autumn 2012 when I commenced a Postgraduate Diploma in Education and Training (Level 9 NFQ). Hughes and Moore (2007) suggest that teachers in higher-level institutions have gained much tacit knowledge through studies and experience but the purpose of reflection is to make this tacit knowledge overt so that teachers can build on their practice to develop a repertoire or a tool kit for solving problems in the future. Using Brookfield’s (1995) four lens for critical reflection, this presentation will focus on the methods I used to become a critical reflective practitioner. These reflections are contained in the ePortfolio that I created and which was an important element of my reflective practice.

Speaker: Bill Hunter
Bill Hunter was born in Larne, County Antrim. His teaching career started in Akron, Ohio where he taught high school English. He received a PhD in educational psychology from Kent State University in 1974. He has worked for universities in Ohio, Rhode Island, Nova Scotia, Alberta and Ontario. He has had research leaves to New York, Ireland, Northern Ireland and New Zealand.

In 2002, he was the founding dean of the Faculty of Education at The University of Ontario Institute of Technology. Before that, he spent 16 years as an education professor and department head at the University of Calgary. He was previously on the faculty of Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Throughout his career, Bill has taught educational technology, statistics, measurement, learning theory, human development, programme evaluation and other areas of educational psychology. He has also taught for university departments of mathematics, nursing, psychology and home economics.

His early research was on moral reasoning and educational programme evaluation. In the mid 1980s, his interests turned to educational technology and his current research focus is on ICT and community cohesion. In 2013, Roger Austin of Ulster University and Bill published Online Learning and Community Cohesion, an examination of international projects using ICT to bring together children and teachers from communities in conflict. He has had extensive experience as a reviewer and editor for research journals – most notably as editor of the Canadian Journal of Education.

Abstract: Beyond ePortfolios: student as public scholar
A portfolio is generally understood to be a collection of work to be shared with targeted others: instructors, potential employers, clients. It is, in effect, a limited circulation publication. Historically, ‘student’ and ‘scholar’ were fairly synonymous but they have come to have different meanings, with ‘scholar’ reserved for those with a higher level of expertise. This presentation will look back at some of the other presentations in the conference with the intention of making a case for a larger publication role for students as part of a reconceptualisation of students as scholars.

Speaker: Harry McCann
Harry McCann is a 17-year-old tech entrepreneur, speaker, MC, advisor, ambassador and blogger while also being a fifth-year secondary school student in Clane, Co. Kildare. He is the founder and director of the first Digital Youth Council in the world and, most recently, the co-founder and CEO of the worldwide education movement #LetsTeachCode. In the past three years, Harry has worked with some of the biggest names across a number of industries, including Lord David Putnam, Stephen Fry and Norah Casey. His work and contribution to technology, education and business has not gone unrecognised. Harry has been named in TheJournal.ie 20 under 20 brightest and most inspirational young people of 2015, Spunout.ie list of 7 Inspiring Young Irish People 2015 and a number of other lists recognising the brilliant work being done by people all around the world.

Abstract: The digital lives of teenagers
A generation is meeting people differently, chatting differently, working differently and much more because of one thing – technology. The effect technology is having on young people cannot be fully understood until you get your head around the swipes, the taps, the shakes and the implications of what this means for how young people represent themselves online.

In this presentation, I will explore the concept of digital identity for teenagers whose lives are increasingly lived on social media sites such as Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter. I will consider the extent to which teenagers are aware of the digital footprint they are leaving behind and how that might impact the way they present their digital selves.

Speakers: Jen Harvey, Peter Lewis, Dave Kilmartin, Brian Gormley

Abstract: Taking the LEAD: reflections on using ePortfolios for students to evidence employability skills development
In 2011, DIT established the Lead, Engage, Achieve, Develop (LEAD) module as a way to recognise and award academic credit to the learning that takes place outside the confines of formal academic study. Students apply online to take the LEAD award and all shortlisted applicants are then interviewed by members of the programme team. Students must demonstrate their involvement in a leadership role within their selected extra-curricular and co-curricular activities, for example, student societies, clubs, volunteering projects and so on. LEADers select three employability skills they would like to develop over the period of the award. These are then consolidated through a negotiated learning action plan. The module is supported through a series of workshops and small group mentor meetings. Students are asked to maintain an online personal reflective blog. The module is assessed through the completion of an ePortfolio of evidence.

As a result of student evaluation feedback, the structure and format of the award has evolved over the five years that it has been running. Award graduates value the formal recognition that LEAD provides for their skills development. Success is determined by the intrinsic motivation of the students who enrol on the module and the nature and the level of engagement within the leadership learning opportunities of which they avail over the duration of Award.

Speaker: Bernie Goldbach
Bernie Goldbach lectures more than 16 hours a week for the Limerick Institute of Technology in a cross-section of business, creative multimedia and digital animation programmes. He has taught adult learners since 1979, including high-speed acrobatics to NASA astronauts and heavy aircraft aerial refuelling to special operations pilots in the US Air Force. He has written a blog since 1997 and is one of the first 100 people in Ireland to join LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. He’s very findable as @topgold on several social networks.

Abstract: Managing your digital footprints
This hands-on workshop shows you how to create digital footprints for yourself; how to discover elements of your digital identity that you did not realise existed and how to petition for removal of electronic assets that might be very outdated, controversial or derogatory. You will use Wolfram Alpha to generate a word cloud of content you locate. You will learn how Google points people to places, people, images and videos. Then, you will edit some of those results to improve the quality of information in each case. Some of your time will involve co-authoring a Microsoft PowerPoint deck to share LinkedIn profiles. You will also complete a portion of a presentation in Microsoft Sway so everyone can see the kind of sociometric pattern represented by your digital footprints.

Speaker: Dr Helen Barrett
In 2005, Dr Helen Barrett retired from the faculty of the College of Education at the University of Alaska Anchorage and is now living in the Seattle area. She has been researching strategies and technologies for ePortfolios since 1991, publishing a web site (http://electronicportfolios.org/), chapters in several books on ePortfolios and numerous articles. She worked with the International Society for Technology in Education between 2001 and early 2005, providing training and technical assistance on ePortfolios for teacher education programmes throughout the US under a federal PT3 grant. In 2005, Dr Barrett became the Research Project Director for the REFLECT Initiative, a two-year research project, underwritten by TaskStream, to assess the impact of ePortfolios on student learning, motivation and engagement in secondary schools.

Dr Barrett is currently doing research for a book on interactive ePortfolios to be published online. She has been an adjunct faculty member for Seattle Pacific University, where she taught about issues and advances in educational technology. Her international consulting focuses on the integration of ePortfolios for learning and digital storytelling in K-12 schools and higher education. She is an Apple Distinguished Educator.

At the European ePortfolio Conference in Maastricht, October 2007, Dr Barrett received the first EIFEL Lifetime Achievement Award for her contribution to ePortfolio research and development. In 2011, she established the REAL ePortfolio Academy for K-12 teachers, providing online courses for individuals and assessment/planning support for K-12 institutions.

Workshop: Digital identity through digital storytelling in ePortfolios
In this workshop, Dr Helen Barrett will explore digital storytelling, including examples from higher education students and faculty. She will discuss why you would create digital stories and tie this in with research on metacognition and learning through storytelling. Helen will also examine how to create digital stories, looking at strategies for using low-end digital tools/software/apps, including mobile devices and online tools.

She will go through the entire process in the workshop, but without a story written, images gathered and a specific platform, software or app in mind, it would be difficult for each participant to complete a story. However, enough of the process will be covered so that participants can try it on their own after the workshop.