– The purpose of this paper is to show the practicality of a new portfolio design that incorporates distributed content, emphasizes student ownership, encourages social learning, and acknowledges the central importance of ease of use.
– The approach's practicality is demonstrated through survey results and usage logs from two case studies.
– Students enjoy using this system, and report that its social aspects improve their academic performance and motivation. They also report it as being more social than their past experiences with BlackBoard.
– The paper provides support for a vision of distributed educational software centered on portfolios, anchored by course tools, connected to assessment outcomes, and opened for public learning.