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I spent some of my time off playing around with Excel 2010 and put together an electronic folio system that allows pupils to collect and manage evidence of the work they have done. If I am being honest, it is a simplified excel-based version of something a started putting together before I left Teaching but was unable to complete (though it was not originally done in Excel). I will also admit to having ACfE’s Broad General Education in mind at the time!
Whilst there may be many uses for this, I saw it as a simple and easy way for pupils to gather evidence of work they had undertaken for given E’s and O’s and reflect on it as a basis for target setting. They could, for example, build up evidence throughout the year and copy the excel file and folders to a cd or usb drive to take away. As evidence is merely housed in a folder, it can take any form – from pdf files, through to image, audio, video and CAD.
There are 2 versions of the software available – one that allows pupils to print their whole folio from the default printer and one that does not (though they can still print individual sheets). Each version will allow pupils to define 20 separate folio items.
Instructions for use:
Each pupil is given as many copies of the excel file as you wish (each can form a different ‘folio’) though it may be that one is fine for a given subject. The excel file must sit in the same folder as the ‘Evidence’ folder for the system to work and you cannot rename the evidence folder or any of the sub-folder within.
When the file is opened for the first time, the user will have to enable the active content as this file relies on internal scripting.
There are two main screens: the overview screen and the screen for individual targets. Pupils will essentially move between each of these. The images below detail the main functions of each:
When a new folio item is chosen, the individual item screen will appear. Here, pupils can provided detail of and reflect on the work as well as set an associated target or area for improvement. They can add evidence files to their folio item by clicking on the ‘My Evidence’ button on the bottom right. The files that they add to this folder will be listed on the item page the next time they go into it. The entries that pupils add here will be carried through to the overview page.
The system is set up so that pupils cannot edit anything other than the fields shown. They are not able to add additional worksheets or alter any of the layouts. It is recommended that pupils do not run it in developer mode.
You can download and use this excel file freely with your pupils when you sign up to follow the Thinkosity blog. All I would ask is that you acknowledge myself and encourage others to visit the blog.