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Charles Clifford Keller
Ian Alberts
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Charles Clifford Keller
Ian Alberts
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International Research Journal of Curriculum and Pedagogy

Using ePortfolio to Foster Interdisciplinary Thinking and Effective Pedagogical Practice across Class Boundaries

Ian Alberts and Charles Keller*

LaGuardia Community College, City University of New York, USA.

Accepted 17 August, 2016.

Citation: Alberts I, Keller C (2016). Using ePortfolio to Foster Interdisciplinary Thinking and Effective Pedagogical Practice across Class Boundaries. International Research Journal of Curriculum and Pedagogy, 2(1): 006-024.

 

Copyright: © 2016 Alberts I and Keller. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are cited.

Abstract

This work describes a project using ePortfolio as a medium to facilitate effective pedagogical strategies in the context of a group-based research paper assignment spanning class boundaries.  Small groups of students were required to complete a scaffolded, semester-long project culminating in a group research paper based on some topic of relevance to the fields of biology and chemistry.  Each group consisted of students from a chemistry class and a biology class.  Our aim was to enhance student understanding of scientific concepts, while exercising critical thinking, writing, and reflective skills in an interdisciplinary context using ePortfolio as the medium for work and feedback. We describe the nature and development of the assignment, its implementation and challenges encountered in the process of developing and refining the project.  This work was implemented with two cohorts of students.  The first attempt revealed a series of shortcomings centering around lack of student interactions and unresponsive group members. These issues were largely alleviated in the second implementation. Our basic framework can be adapted by educators in any discipline seeking to implement multiple pedagogical approaches simultaneously through using ePortfolio.  Our experience suggests that the pedagogical strategies we utilized can be successful given adequate instructor engagement and feedback.

Keywords:  Interdisciplinary, reflection, integrative learning, ePortfolio, science education.