Welcome to the Digication Library — an exciting new feature designed to promote dynamic, individualized instruction and active learning within the ePortfolio environment!
This article will address the following topics:
- Pedagogical Implications: Making the Most of the Digication Library for Instruction
- Create a New Template
- Save an ePortfolio as a Template
- Updating and Managing a Template
- Digication Template Notifications
- Create an ePortfolio using a Template
- Add a Template to an Existing ePortfolio
Making the Most of the Digication Library for Instruction
The Digication Library provides a space where users may create and share templates, ranging from maximally scaffolded “shells,” to pre-formatted style models, to single prompt slides. These templates may easily be integrated into existing and new ePortfolios, alike. Far more than a feature of convenience, the Digication Library was developed with a focus on providing the most flexible teaching and learning space possible.
All users have the ability to share ePortfolios as templates to the Library and retrieve templates from the Library. As such, faculty users of Digication may wish to share programmatic/course-level ePortfolio templates as well as instructional content in the Library; these items may be shared widely with the entire Digication community (as “open” educational resources), with members of the faculty member’s institution, with students listed on specific course rosters, and/or with individual students or colleagues. Having the ability to share instructional content with students, which they—in turn—will be able to access and utilize within their ePortfolios, carries important implications for teaching and learning with Digication ePortfolios.
Templates designed for the programmatic/course-level ePortfolio reside within the Digication Library. These templates may be minimally scaffolded, perhaps containing some basic stylistic elements and pages; or they may be maximally scaffolded, providing users a full structure of what is to be included within the ePortfolio; or they may be somewhere in between, offering the structure necessary for the needs of the user and befitting the objectives of the ePortfolio itself. Adding a dynamic element to the structure of an ePortfolio, templates may be supplemented throughout the life of the ePortfolio and throughout the duration of the instructional period with additional pages and slides containing content, instructions, and prompts.
No simple repository, the Digication Library was deliberately designed with a constructive approach to learning, where faculty are encouraged to make tools available to students that will better facilitate the building of their knowledge and understanding, which they make visible in their ePortfolios. These tools may take the form of instructional slides with targeted resources, recorded lectures, presentations and many other media selected in response to student work. These instructional resources are stored in the Library as templates containing one or multiple slides or a collection of pages that can be shared to students at appropriate points throughout instruction for inclusion in their ePortfolios. Through the provision of this “just-in-time” instruction based on specific student needs, faculty are able to develop and distribute context-based, authentic guidance to provide the appropriate redirecting, supplementing, and enriching of learning.
On the next screen, you will be able to set a custom Title and URL and URL for your ePortfolio. Other settings such as your ePortfolio permissions can be adjusted later. Click here to read more about ePortfolio Settings!
If you would like to base your new ePortfolio Template off of an existing Template in your Library, search through the Templates that have been made available to you and select the custom Template you would like to use. Otherwise, you can select the Digication Default Template or From Scratch option to support your new ePortfolio. When you are done with your ePortfolio's initial settings, click the Create button(2) to create your ePortfolio with the selected Template.
Instructions and Prompts
During the course of customizing your ePortfolio for a Template, you will be able to utilize multiple tools that can assist you in creating your desired pedagogical structure such as Instruction slides and Prompts.
When you set a slide as an Instruction slide, it will be seen as a source of guidance for learners utilizing your Template. Instruction slides can be customized with text, images, videos, or any other content that can be uploaded to your ePortfolio. Instruction slides will only be visible when viewing your ePortfolio in Edit mode and they will not be archived when you Publish your ePortfolio or submit your ePortfolio to an assignment. You can apply the Instructions setting to a slide by clicking the Slide Settings button(3) and activate the toggle for "Turn Slide Into Instructions"(4).
Prompts are text-based and allow you to provide additional scaffolding relative to the slide or module that the learner is editing. Prompts provide great spaces to give learners guiding questions, reflective prompts, and ideas to consider as they are creating content in their ePortfolio. Prompts will only be visible in Edit mode and they will not be archived when you Publish your ePortfolio or submit your ePortfolio to an assignment. You can add a Prompt to a slide or module by clicking the Settings button(5) and activate the toggle for "Enable Short Text Prompt"(6).
When you select a slide or module set with a Prompt, the Prompt notification will appear at the bottom of your screen in a semi-transparent state. If you move your cursor over the notification window it will appear solid, making it easier to read. The Prompt notification can also be moved or minimized using the buttons on the notification window.
Save an ePortfolio as a Template
After you have completed your customizations for the Template, you can save your ePortfolio as a Template to the Library by accessing the Publish menu(1) and selecting "Save as Template"(2) from the menu options. Any Digication ePortfolio you have Editor or greater rights to can be saved as a Template. Next, you will be prompted to set the Share Settings for your Template.
The next screen allows you to set your Share Settings and customize your Template Info such as the title, URL, description, and the content license. If you are unsure which content license applies to your template, keep the option as "Not specified". When you are finished setting your Template info, click the Continue button(3) to advance to the next step.
Similar to ePortfolios, you can manage visibility of your Template by setting permissions under Who Can See The Template. Permissions set on this screen will only affect who can see this Template in the Library once it has been created. The permission settings for ePortfolios created from this Template can be set during the next step. If you would like to know more about how permissions work, you can click here to read our article about ePortfolio Settings! When you are finished setting your Template permissions, click the Continue button(4) to advance to the next step.
The Template Default Settings are a collection of settings that can be applied to any ePortfolios created from this Template. Toggle the slider next to "Require this template's settings on adopted ePortfolios"(5) to reveal and customize the list of settings that can be applied to ePortfolios created from this Template. When you are finished with the settings under Template Info, Who Can See the Template, and the Template Default Settings, click the Save Settings button(6) to finalize your template settings and save it to the Library.
After your Template has been saved, you will then be brought to your Template Library and see a success message stating that your "New template has been saved"(7).
Updating and Managing a Template
Updating a Template
As you progress through the semester, you will likely identify many opportunities to update and improve your Templates for future learners at your institution. Even though a Template cannot be altered once it is saved to the Library, ePortfolios made from that Template can be updated, saved, and re-shared to the Library as a new Template to replace the previous version.
If you would like to update one of your Templates, first, locate your Template in the Library and then create a new ePortfolio from that Template(1). This will act as the foundation for your new Template. If you would like additional guidance with creating ePortfolios, you can click here and review our Help Desk article about creating a new ePortfolio from a Template.
Now, you can make any changes you would like to the content or structure of the ePortfolio before it is saved as a new Template. When you are finished with your changes, go to the Publish menu and select Save As Template(2) to add this ePortfolio as a Template to your Library.
To help guide you through the Template creation process, You can click here to review our Help Desk article about creating a Template from an ePortfolio
Delete a Template
To help keep your Library organized, any outdated or unwanted Templates you created can be deleted from the Library. Once a template has been deleted from the library, that template will no longer be accessible by you or any other users. Any ePortfolios that previously used this template are not affected. After you have located a Template you would like to delete, click the More Options icon and select Delete(3) from the menu.
Be Aware: Deleting a Template is a permanent action that cannot be undone, please be certain of your choice to delete any Templates in your Library.
Copy a Template.
As you grow your tools and refine your collection of Templates, you have the option to create a copy of an existing Template and save it with different permissions and general settings. After you have located a Template you would like to copy, click the More Options icon and select Copy(4) from the menu.
Digication Template Notifications
An email notification will be sent to you at your registered email address anytime a Template is shared with you, or shared with any of the courses and groups you belong to. Click the View Template button(1) in the email to access the newly shared template.
Create an ePortfolio using a Template
If you would like to create a New ePortfolio from a Template and integrate the ePortfolio settings, go to your Library by moving your mouse cursor to the left side of your screen to reveal the user menu and clicking the Library button(1).
Next, you will see the Templates available to you in the Library. Select the Template you would like to use as the foundation of your ePortfolio(2) to reveal more information about the Template. If you would like to add the selected Template to your ePortfolio, click Use This Template(3). If you would like to further review the contents of the Template, click Preview(4).
While previewing your Template, you have the ability to view all of the Template pages so you are aware of the content being added to your ePortfolio. If you would like to add the Template pages you are currently previewing to your ePortfolio, click "Use This Template"(5) to select the current Template and advance to the next step.
After clicking Use This Template, the next screen will allow you to choose if you would like to create a new ePortfolio from the Template or add the Template pages to an existing ePortfolio. If you would like to create a new ePortfolio from the Template, select Create New ePortfolio Based on This Template(6). Or, you can select one of your existing ePortfolios(7) to receive the Template pages to an ePortfolio from the list below.
If you chose to add the Template to an existing ePortfolio, the next screen will give you the choice to click Create New Page(8) to create and name a new page to nest the Template pages under or you can select an existing page from your ePortfolio(9). After you have made your selection, click Add To Page(10) to advance to the next step.
The next screen will allow you to set any ePortfolio permission options the Template owner requests be applied to new ePortfolios created from the Template. If you would like to know more about ePortfolio permissions and settings, click here to read our article about ePortfolio Settings!
When you are finished managing your ePortfolio permission settings, click Apply These Settings(11) to apply the displayed permission settings to your new ePortfolio and advance to the final step.
After applying the Template settings to your ePortfolio, the next screen will let you review your ePortfolio's final settings to help you make sure that your ePortfolio is shared correctly. When you have finished reviewing your settings, click the Save Settings button(12) to save your ePortfolio settings and add the Template pages to your ePortfolio.
Adding a Template to an Existing ePortfolio
If you would like to add Template pages for your ePortfolio without integrating any of the ePortfolio settings, access your Library by clicking the Add Content button(1) in the bottom-right corner of your ePortfolio.
After accessing your Library through the Add Content button, any template you Use(2) or Preview(3) and then Use, will have the Template pages added to your ePortfolio without the additional settings.
Any Template pages adopted through the Add Content tool will be added to the top-level organization of your ePortfolio pages.