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Free-range Thoughts

Marinating in the Mooc

For the love of thorny, unambiguous good, demand that kids submit portfolios of interdisciplinary, arts-infused work that oozes passion.

Chad at

Could portfolios be one solid practice coming as a result of Hacking the Academy?  In my attempts to pursue professional development on the cheap, I often follow twitter feeds of major conferences such as DML 2012 which took place in San Francisco last weekend. Culling good links from the #dml2012 twitter feed led me to passionate blog posts and spirited conversations about how education could be, if we could just let go. It’s radical stuff.

I can’t help but notice from time to time a beautiful gem — occasionally mentioned —  in the manifestos, opinions, and cries: Portfolios. Perhaps you have seen mentions here and there as well?

If we imagine, expect, and collect more authentic work throughout the system, then we’ll see kids in entirely new and amazing light.

Chad, again,  in a reply comment below his post on Hacking Admissions Standards. 

Dr. Barrett has unpacked portfolios for us to such a thorough degree that there is not much more to figure out, except to develop the persuasion and political will and skill to make it happen. No small task by the way. And even in this task she has set up the scaffolding for us:  a template to use for brainstorming our implementation strategies. Brilliant.

I have no doubt that the time for portfolios is building momentum… especially as educational reform begins to realize the opportunities in portfolios. I have promised myself to be patient. I’m in it for the long haul.


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