Annette Marksberry

AVP for Information Resources
Xavier University

Project Title:

The Use of ePortfolios and their Role in Extending the Mission and Identity at Xavier University

Project Overview:

The project will focus on the use of ePortfolios in conjunction with the Alternative Break program at Xavier. Students from several identified alternative breaks would be asked to review current practices of discerning their Alternative Break experiences along with their expression of these experiences and the “gaps” in those practices when it came to Ignatian spirituality and our mission as a Jesuit Catholic Institution. By using ePortfolios, students will be able to create more explicit expectations of mission and identity for our students participating in the Alternative Break program.

Over the course of the fundraising period for the Alternative Break, these select students would be asked to reflect on ways to create an expectation of Ignatian focused practice and the means to measure if there was any measureable impact.


There appears to be an obvious and absolute lack of a structured avenue for students participating in the Alternative Break program to broadcast and communicate their experience. This lack of ability to publicly share the impact the alternative break has had on them from a mission and identity perspective, is a limitation.

Project Details:

1. An ePortfolio package will need to be identified and purchased by the Information Resources area.
2. In a partnership with the Center for Faith and Justice I would work to identify three Alternative Break groups that would be pilot groups for the ePortfolios
3. The Gifts of our Ignatian Heritage would be a tool for this work. The gifts are: Mission, Reflection, Discernment, Solidarity and Kinship, and Service Rooted in Justice and Love.
Each Alternative Break group would have the Gifts distributed and explained during program orientation and reviewed during the fundraising period.
5. Each Alternative Break group would be provided questions related to the themes of the gifts to refer to during their Alternative Break.
6. The three Alternative Break groups will be identified into three different ways to use the ePortfolios:
a. One group will use the ePortfolio tool as a group during their trip. The leaders will be given the ability to update the portfolio.
b. One group will use the ePortfolio tool individually. Each member of the Alternative Break group will have ability to update the group portfolio.
c. The last group I would hope to be a member of and will work with the leaders to use the tool collaboratively as a hybrid of both individually and as a group.
7. Students will use the ePortfolios during the Alternative Break to address the Gifts.

Indications of Success

The best measures of success will be feedback from the participating students. The overarching question will be whether the ePortfolios helped them to identify with the Gifts.