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Wednesday, June 18 • 11:00am - 12:30pm
PSD.41 – Experience and Meaning: Skills Portfolios to Document Transformational Moments for Arts Students

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Those of us who teach in the Arts tell our students (quite rightly, I think) that a degree in Arts is transformational.  One should think differently, be different at the end than at the beginning.  The challenge of most Arts degrees, though, is that the variety students are offered in their course choices can make recognizing those moments of transformation difficult.  To paraphrase T. S. Eliot, our students may have the experience, but miss the meaning.  This session proposes skills or career portfolios for Arts students as a way to mark, understand, and document moments of transformation.

Portfolios have a variety of purposes, of course, and career or skills portfolios for students about to leave the university setting tend to focus on integrating the student’s course experience with extracurricular activities; on identifying and giving evidence of marketable skills; and generally on preparing for the transition from university life to a career. I teach a fourth-year capstone course for Arts majors, and my students have indeed found the portfolios helpful as they plan for their careers.  What they (and I) have been most surprised by is seeing the difference between their first-year and their fourth-year selves.  The portfolios become tangible evidence of their transformation; it is a profound and moving process to witness.  

This session will start with an outline of the nature and general purposes of a skills portfolio, suggest the documentation of transformational moments as one of those purposes, and end with a discussion of other ways to help students appreciate and mark those moments.


Speakers

Wednesday June 18, 2014 11:00am - 12:30pm
A232 McArthur Hall

Attendees (5)