Using coursework and extracurricular activity to maintain a website that showcases work and develops a strong online #network-of-practitioners
Stephanie Holt requested support from the College to develop a project that would position and connect graduates with professional opportunities. It was decided that a website would be needed to showcase and archive works, along with curriculum activities that help to strengthen graduate online presence, connectedness, and portfolios.
Developing a strong and professional online identity takes time, and connectedness to others in your field. Arguably the best time to start or shape that identity is when you’re a student, surrounded by other students, teaching staff and industry contacts. Curriculum activities can be geared toward exploiting this moment of connectedness so as to rapidly develop and propel a graduates online identity, so as to be best positioned for opportunities going forward.
- A simple website was created live, as a proof of concept
- It was iteratively developed and modified as comments and feedback was gathered
- A viable workflow for maintaining the site was developed, and curriculum and assessment activities were changed to align
- Student editorial groups are convened each year through a combination of alumni, volunteers and work placements as part of coursework.
- Critically, a strategy of distributed web networking was developed, where the majority of work being showcased on the website is hosted outside the website. Likewise, authors, editors and others involved in the website, host their profiles off the website. This creates a distributed network that, when done at the scale of a program, can quickly generate a strong online presence for all involved, similar to strategies in search engine optimisation.
- WordPress.com was used to develop the central website
- LinkedIn was used to develop author profiles and portfolio
- Archive.org’s WayBackMachine, as well as screenrecordings are used to copy and backup works that are showcased by the website
Feature image licensed Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0) by John Fischer https://flic.kr/p/6K84Ek