Technology Enhanced Learning and Teaching
What is Mahara?
Mahara is an e-Portfolio and social networking system where by students can record evidence of their learning. It is readily used for reflection - having journal and blog features integrated into the system. Content can be added in various media formats, such as videos, text and images.
Mahara and assessment
There is now the possibility for innovative assessment through the use of Mahara where students create media rich portfolios which might contain digital media such as photography and video. For staff who advocate experiential pedagogy within curriculum, Mahara allows students to put theory into practice, gather evidence of achievement (perhaps from the workplace), and reflect on what has been learnt.
Mahara and employment
The opportunity to send a Mahara portfolio page to a potential employer gives our students a competitive advantage. No longer will students just write in their CV that they have good communication skills, they can showcase evidence collected demonstrating that they really do have these skills.
Mahara and transition
Transition into higher education can be difficult for many students, especially those from overseas. The social networking aspects of Mahara will help students to make friends and connections with learning peers. It will also allow students to find out more about life in and around the University, and to take part in their own online communities, without the associated dangers of using a public forum such as Facebook.
Mahara and engagement
Mahara is a very personal 'space' for the students, and the 'blank canvas' approach gives the students the autonomy to be creative with what they decide to publish. To make the most of Mahara, tutors must design good learning activities which require students to add relevant evidence to their portfolios.
How do I use Mahara for assessing my students?
Mahara can used for formative and summative assessments through a Moodle assignment point.