Fox students learn identity management and create e-portfolios
A quick Google and Facebook search is all it takes to learn a lot about a person or a firm. Branding was always important for large firms, but now each person and firm is a ‘brand’ – and that brand or digital identity directly impacts careers and job searches. Students are particularly vulnerable to ‘branding’ (both positive and negative) because they enter college with at least a Facebook brand.
An e-portfolio, also known as an electronic resume, is a collection of documents about individual skill sets and body of work. Students can use an e-portfolio to actively control and manage their digital identities and reputation so that they can get the best internships and jobs. The e-portfolio is intended to be more formal than a Facebook page but more creative and open than a LinkedIn profile. See student e-portfolio samples here: Nathan Van Cleave, Elizabeth Grey, Xiao Yang, and Elias Hessler.
E-portfolios are a required assignment in MIS 2101 starting in Fall 2011. The initiative includes:
- Custom design of student e-portfolio themes with detailed instructions and templates and a list of common mistakes.
- Workshops and tutorials, including videos on YouTube
- An e-portfolio site through which students can easily submit e-portfolios for listing (for prospective employers)
- New search engine for employers to locate students. The search engine uses profile fields to show status, interest, job type, skills and other relevant criteria. To show up in this search engine, students must submit their e-portfolio for listing.
Profile fields are a key element of social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn. This is how people find others, learn statuses, and how the software automatically suggests new contacts. Profile fields can serve a career placement function when they are used with e-portfolios to quickly find people based on employment status, looking for a job or not, looking for full-time or part-time jobs, experience, type of job interest (e.g., developer or analyst), and skills and interests (e.g., auditing, cyber-security, social media, etc.).
Students set their profiles by logging in to the Community site. What is exciting is that once a student has, for example, selected a particular skill or interest, he or she can later click on that item and see all the people who are interested in that area. This feature moves the Community site closer to being a real community.
Analytics provide the tools to evaluate the results of designing digital identities and give feedback into search engine optimization (SEO) and reputation management. The Community site uses Google Analytics, which allow students to see the ‘hits’ they generate on their e-portfolios and the demographics of where those hits are coming from. Students learn how to use Google Analytics in MIS 2101.