The Electronic Portfolio of

E-Portfolio Reflections

March 2012

The opportunity to make an E-Portfolio was a very worthwhile one. The opportunity to have others read it is even more meaningful and exciting.

Too often in everyday life, whether it’s at the job or at school, the chance to demonstrate one’s communication skills with writing is confined to a few lousy emails or academic essays completely devoid of character, creativity, or love for writing. Many people enjoyed both reading and writing at one time or another, but somewhere the joy of expressing oneself with words was lost.

My Portfolio is a mixture of the skill set I learned in New Media Writing, some of my greatest essays, and a few pieces which reflect a more easy-going, quirky side of writing . It is me. On display for potential employers, friends, colleagues, and family is writing which describes me. My resume shows where I’ve been, as does my older essays in terms of proficiency and experience. My reflections and blog posts show my interests and where I plan to take my New Media ability in the future, inside the Minor and out.

Our big class project, this Portfolio, is the product of four months of work. I broke down personal barriers to New Media writing in the form of incompetence and ignorance, and learned how to work with a team to determine the strengths and weaknesses of writing, including (most importantly) my own. I continually had to prove my dexterity in transitioning from one form to the other, one unprecedented writing prompt to the next. Taking an original source text from one of my political science classes, I learned how to re-purpose and re-mediate it in order to reach different audiences. This has only served to make me more nimble as a writer; I am now able to recognize the means by which a paper can be taken from one source to a completely different one. For example, my re-purposing project took a stoic, argumentative paper and converted its main points into an readily understandable fairy tale (of all things). Before the Minor, I would not have known such a feat was possible, let alone how to orchestrate such a manuever.

I also modeled my work in Writing 200 off of two of my writing inspirations, Chief Justice John Roberts and John V. Lindsay, brilliant legal writers who made frequent appearances in my blogs. Evident in my Portfolio is an underlying theme of the law, government, and politics, which I am planning to have a career in after college. I strove to emulate these authors’ prowess and respect for writing by understanding that writing that does not reach the audience is useless. And in the age of New Media we find ourselves in, it only makes sense to incorporate new tactics like blogs and Wikis and hyperlinks to express yourself. I always knew the writing itself was important; the Minor and my inspirations are showing me that the way it is presented is of tantamount importance.

My motivation during these projects and the course were to push my writing bounds. My affinity for writing was somewhat sequestered to the academic realm, something I was not very cognizant of before I entered Shelley’s class. I experienced a greater freedom to explore the topic and audience, and plan out my writing. It quickly became apparent that I needed to expand my writing toolkit to include blogging, storyboarding, editing techniques, and audience analysis in order to not only remain a contender a title of “good writer” but also in the real world. Companies want to see that in addition to the essays you’re writing on community in the Third Reich or interpretations of Machiavelli, you can be persuasive, creative, and concise in new forms of writing. These notions of real-world application drove me throughout the course, and will continue to fuel my drive next year in the Capstone course.

  1. Please refer to my blog, located in the menu above, to read more about my relflections on writing, the course, and projects in New Media.

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