Learning Portfolio Week 13

•June 2, 2009 • Leave a Comment
 Learning Portfolio 4


Question One

 Credibility, or our perception of credibility, is described by B.J Fogg (2003) as coming down to two basic views; trustworthiness and expertise.

If someone, a company or a website is perceived to have a good measure of either of these than more often or not they are deemed credible. A large amount of people base credibility on image, and even more base it upon personal similarities (if someone has a similar cultural background) Fogg (2003). Either way the wide and easy accessibility of the web has resulted in information dilution in one sense and information flooding in another. Websites are easy to create, and with millions of new websites the quality of information on the web has been diluted. At the same time the web has become an online extravaganza for advertising, buying and selling. Users are literally flooded with endless threats (spam) and endless advertisements.

Such accessibility of the web makes it vital for users to filter webpage’s, based on how refutable their information, creators and companies are. Student’s especially need to go to great lengths before committing to a website as it could essentially mean the difference between a pass and a fail. Within some of my units are complex topics that require online resources as well as books however finding a credible website sometimes seems impossible as there are more and more online ‘encyclopaedia’s’ that allow users (regardless of their profession) to put up posts on various topics. Such websites try for an image of credibility, trying to “…persuade…” (Fogg, 2003, p. 147) users to visit their site and use their information.


Question Two

“Welcome to Wikipedia, the free encyclopaedia that anyone can edit.”

If we assume anyone to be literally anyone then, those who so choose to use the information from Wikipedia, are in the hands of the anonymous (which could or could not include internet anarchists or merely the occasional eleven year old girl).

Quite simply Wikipedia is not a dependable website and the quality of the information is the farthest from satisfactory.  Wikipedia is only slightly useful as a pre-reader – for example if you researching something entirely new and don’t have the slightest hint as to what it is about than Wikipedia is helpful, but that’s where the line stops.

With no system in balance in terms of monitoring what is posted and edited, it seems many are victim to the disputable information as “…former Robert Kennedy aide John Seigenthaler wrote in USA Today;’…For four months, Wikipedia depicted me as a suspected assassin…”


 Question Three

In its short history the internet has transformed and excelled beyond measure. It has changed so much in its history that assumedly it will continue to do so. We can only assume that people will continue to become masters of the internet, expanding their skills as the internet progresses.

So, what does this mean for web credibility?

We can presume that the current issues; such as online security, privacy and credibility, facing web sites today will still be prevalent in years to come – they will presumably be more serious.

Online Security

Online security is an issue currently;

However it can only worsen with the progression of the internet

I believe that this will be a very serious issue, as new technologies will only make hacking easier

Sites where money transactions take place (EBay, online banks etc.) will have to put numerable measures in place to ensure maximum security

People will have to be more questioning before doing an online transaction

Sites will have to work hard to maintain credibility


Sites will have maintain high security standards to ensure the privacy of its members 

People will have to be more savvy when choosing networking sites, and what content they put on the internet 

Even simple things like email accounts – credibility checks should be carried out 

I think there will be even more sites trying to lure customers 

Spam and infections will become more rampant  



I believe trying to gain recognition or credibility will be much harder for websites

It will be harder for sites to stand out from other badly put together sites as web design becomes easier

Credible sites will have to maintain quality as there will be an upsurge in low quality and questionable web sites.




This is an example of a reputed website. The Oxford Journals are widely regarded as strong information research material.


The Hunger Project Website is a credibility earned site. I chose it because I visit the site often; it provides constant updates on campaigns, recent news and consistently accurate and true information.


This is a presumed type of credibility. It has an ‘org’ at the end of its URL, and viewers would simply presume that it provides true and update information on contemporary art.


A professional looking website, this is surface credibility. This site looks professionally done, and the title of the company helps give the site a sense of expertise.

 Activity 2

( Presentation Project is in Week Eleven’s Post)

Assignment 1 Creative Report

Picture 11

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Terdiman, D. (2009). ‘Growing Pains for Wikipedia’. Retrieved May 26, 2009, from Cnet News: http://news.cnet.com/Growing-pains-for-Wikipedia/2100-1025_3-5981119.html

Fogg, B. J. (2003). Credibility and the World Wide Web. In Persuasive Technology: Using Computers to Change What We Think and Do (pp. 122‐125). Amsterdam: Morgan Kaufmann Publishers.








Learning Portfolio Week 11

•June 2, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Learning Portfolio Two

Question One

In our age of contemporary modernity innovation is important as it never has been before. Technology, design, art and business are at new heights within each respective area, only innovation can further improve and transform society and the way we live in it. The benefits of technology are profound, its negatives more so. Daniel Pink, cited in Reynolds (2008, p.14), states that we are at a stage in our society where those who “…think different…” are required more than ever.

All individuals are different in how they, and their brain, functions and operates. Pink asserts that now, more than ever, right minded people are essential to business and innovation. The right hemisphere reasoning is required in today’s conceptual age, as those who are more dominated by their right hemisphere have the more of an aptitude for visual and spatial skills (S Gordon, J Johnson, 2002). Pink makes reference to six right brain directed skills, aptitudes necessary for professionals wishing to succeed.


  • Should not be considered an ‘afterthought’ 
  • Starts from the beginning 
  • Not just decoration 
  • In terms of presentation design: 
  • Tailor the design to the topic 
  • Avoid simply ‘tacking on’ images, incorporate them into the discussion 


  • Facts can be relayed over and over – avoid this 
  • Add your own personal touch to your information 
  • Eliminate all irrelevant information [1] 
  • Try and incorporate personal past experiences into your information 
  • Offer advice! 



  •  lluminate your information 
  • Reveal patterns previously not recognised 
  • Try and place everything into a wider spectrum 
  • Adress all aspects of this ‘wider spectrum’
  • Avoid simplifying a presentation – this will ruin the meaning behind  it
  • Find what most important and highlight it within the presentation 



  • Imagine yourself in the position of your audience 
  • In your mind, watch yourself 
  • Be attentive towards your audience – see whether or not they  understand your presentation 
  • Remember all things in moderation – attentiveness is not unconditional  it is relative to time so be aware of how long you are taking


  • Present in good humour – seriousness doesn’t mean the   elimination of humour
  • Presentations will benefit from an injection of humour
  •  Humour boosts morale and increases creativeness – even if it is a business presentation a joke can’t go astray, your audience and presentation will only benefit from it.


  •  A presentation means that people have gathered to listen – use this opportunity to make an impact however small on your audience
  • Even if it is only to show them that not all presentations are boring
  • Don’t waste an opportunity to show passion, knowledge and self-expression

  Question Two

Globalisation is a current, perhaps overlooked, important issue in contemporary society. My presentation was on globalisation, a topic of genuine interest to myself.  I think the fact that I enjoyed learning more about globalisation and its effects really impacted on my presentation. Not all of the six ‘right-brain’ aptitudes were employed in my design. However, some were met.

 Picture 11

This first slide is, in my opinion, a strong opening slide. It clearly describes the presentation whilst the overall design and feel to the slide fits well to the topic of globalisation. I believe the aptitude of design was well met, the design of the presentation strongly relates to globalisation and the take I took on it. The visuals support the written content quite well, and are seamlessly (perhaps not in all, but definitely in slide one) worked into the design.

Story – an aptitude I don’t think is really within my presentation. Having learnt of the six aptitudes, story is one I think I’ll strive to include in further presentations as it is an idea I haven’t ever come across. Now looking over my design I regret the lack of personal experience within my presentation – especially in light of the fact that I am lucky enough to have visited places of both the top end and bottom end of globalisation.

 Picture 13

Symphony is only slightly present within my design. The ‘wider picture’ is depicted within the presentation however there needed to a slide included regarding what the benefiters of globalisation are morally obligated to do to help those who suffer as a result of globalisation.


Similarly I could have injected more empathy into the presentation. It’s not that I wasn’t empathetic but, with the inclusion of my personal experiences, I believe I could have demonstrated this emotion a lot more. Despite this the meaning of the presentation was not lost, in my opinion. I believe I showed globalisation and what it meant for all different types of people, but, with the inclusion of the absent aptitudes this one too could have benefited.

The aptitude of humour – doesn’t exist within my presentation. Not even a glimmer. Having looked over the aptitudes in relation to my design the possibilities of improvement were endless however the inclusion of humour into a serious topic such is globalisation seems somewhat daunting.

Nonetheless the six aptitudes were enlightening – and exciting as they brought on a stream of ideas on how to improve within design.


Having analysed the six right brain aptitudes in relation to my presentation design, I sought to apply the missing aptitudes where applicable.

Chiefly I wanted to improve on story, symphony and empathy.

Picture 1

I did not change my first, second or third slides as I believe they were good as is.

Picture 2

Picture 3

Picture 4

Picture 5

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Picture 7

Here I added in a personal recount, giving the presentation ‘story’. This adds more depth to the presentation and enables people to relate more to the issues of globalisation as they can relate to me and my own personal accounts.

Picture 8

In my conclusion, to show a little more empathy and symphony, I talked more of what the privileged minority can do to help all those displaced or at a  disadvantage due to globalisation and its effects.

Picture 9

Picture 10





Reynolds, G. (2008). Presentations in “The Conceptual Age”. In Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery (pp. 14‐19). Berkeley, CA: New Riders.

[1] Werner, K. (2005). Principles for presentation design. Retrieved May 27, 2009, from The Training Designer’s Weblog: http://www.trainingdesign.be/2008/04/04/ten-principles-for-evidence-based-presentation-design/

Attorney Gordon S. Johnson, J. (2002). About Brain Injury:A Guide to Brain Anatomy, Function and Symptoms. Retrieved May 28, 2009, from Brain Function and Anatomy: http://www.waiting.com/brainfunction.html

Learning Portfolio Week 12

•June 2, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Question One

We all perform work tasks every day; however some require either more thinking, more physical exertion or more of both. The more we have to think or move subsequently means the more errors, and longer completion time of the task. There are two types of loads; cognitive and kinematic, the increase of decrease in either of these loads affects our performance.

The cognitive load is the effort associated with reasoning and thinking, including language perception, memory and problem solving. The process of industrialisation saw the invention of many new technologies, however these were basic and underdeveloped (in retrospect), and required, as Lidwell, W., Holden, K., & Butler, J. (2003) assert, a high cognitive load. The process of modernity resulted in new inventions (especially for computers) that reduced the cognitive load and reliance upon memory. Strategies for reducing cognitive load include the reduction of information and visual clamour, the use of memory and visual aids, weeding of information, and chunking important information.

Differing from brain function is body function, kinematic load is the amount of physical exertion required to complete a task. Many modern appliances reduce the kinematic load, and indeed many modern innovations have been born out of this idea of trying to reduce the physicality of a task. A Kinematic load can be reduced by simple measures such as reducing travel distance, and re-directing and reducing task methods.

There are many simple measures that can be taken to reduce unnecessary performance strain, and indeed with studies such as cognitive psychology our mental processes [1] may be re-defined. Being in an age of innovation it is up to individuals to question how far cognitive, but especially kinematic, loads can or should be reduced. 


Question Two

Chunking in Design

 Chunking refers to the effective communication of information between individuals. It is essentially re-organising information into groups or categories to efficiently maximise short term memory. Chunking reduces cognitive load information is pre-organised as usually the brain has to process the information and then organise and store it – chunking reduces this process.

The concept of chunking can be attributed to psychologist George A.  Miller. The Journal article “The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two” was written by Miller around the mid 1950s. From his research Miller revealed the amount of numbers individuals could reliably remember  minutes after being told the number only one. The answer lies in his article title; ‘…Seven, Plus or Minus Two’. Miller stated that the memory span is a fixed number of sections (or chunks), and it was possible to “…increase the number of bits of information that it contains simply by building larger and larger chunks, each chunk containing more information than before…” [2]   

Millers groundbreaking discovery is the base from which stems all information organisation. Everyday things such as telephone numbers, menus, clothing stores, presentations etc, are chunks of information easily navigated, remembered and understood.


Question Three

Psychology in Design

 The study of psychology is a necessary step for design, though one which is often overlooked.

The way we function and receive visuals is scientific – a process – of which can enlighten designers regarding our human reactions to certain colours, symbols, smells, and sounds.

Many of the design elements and principles, within which designers work, were formed from a revelation or new found understanding of the human mind.  The theory of complementary colours was formed from research into the human eye and the way it processes colours. In turn psychology unveiled many symbolic and emotional meanings behind colours, of which now designers understand. Aesthetics is greatly significant in the success of a design; however the realisation of the true importance of aesthetics came about from psychological research that showed how an eye pleasing design had a greater chance of success as it looked more useable (Lidwell, Holden and Butler, 2003).

 Clearly psychology has greatly affected the very principles and practises of design – showing how further study into the subject can only be beneficial.


 Below are some examples of products that have a low perfomance load, thus minimizaing completion time and errors.


The humble doorbell is a good example of kinematic energy – or lack there of. The doorbell minimizes the amount of kinematic energy required.

TV remote

The remote also reduces kinematic energy, alowing individuals to change channels as it suits them with no effort.


The graphics calculator greatly reduces cognitive load as it stores informations and works mathematical equations.



Attorney Gordon S. Johnson, J. (2002). About Brain Injury:A Guide to Brain Anatomy, Function and Symptoms. Retrieved May 28, 2009, from Brain Function and Anatomy: http://www.waiting.com/brainfunction.html

[2] Miller, G. A. (1956). The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Some Limits on Our Capacity for Processing Information. The Psychological Review , 81-97.

San Diego County Office of Education . (2006). Chunking Information. Retrieved May 26, 2009, from Supporting Differentiated Instruction: http://kms.sdcoe.net/differ/21-DSY/53-DSY.html

[1] Wagner, K. V. (2007). What is Cognitive Psychology? Retrieved May 27, 2009, from About.com: http://psychology.about.com/od/cognitivepsychology/f/cogpsych.htm

Learning Portfolio Week 10

•June 2, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Question One

‘A picture speaks a thousand words’ – a statement correct when analysing aesthetics in relation to a design’s usability.  According to the function, a design changes, and so too should the aesthetics.  Aesthetic importance in design is often overlooked, and, as Lidwell, Holden and Butler (2003) assert, has a significant impact on the saleability, useability acceptance and performance of a design.

Research shows that aesthetically pleasing designs look easier to use and therefore are more widely successful. This can be pointed to the fact that these better looking designs are often less cluttered and better organised than less pleasing designs.  Better aesthetics equals better saleability regardless whether or not the product or design is functionally better. This is because most people buy with their eyes and their initial visual pleasure forms a positive attitude toward the design. A good example of how important aesthetics is can be seen in the success of the PC over the Macintosh. Tractinsky (1997) emphasizes that if computers were perceived initially as difficult to use, users were more likely to express dissatisfaction with the interface of the system after four months of use.

Clearly the importance of aesthetics should not be questioned, and as “…style develops from experience…” (Baird, McDonald, Pittman and Turnball, 1964, p.10) all designers should improve their eye for aesthetics simply by looking at the successfully sold and designed products that surround us in everyday life.


Question Two

There are many products at our disposal, being born within an age of modernity and technology. However not all of these meet the aesthetic Usability principle.


One of these that does; the nokia  ‘6300’ – a simple model that offers useful features without clutter, instead going for a simpler, more aesthetically pleasing design. Slim, the phone looks easy to use, with a large screen and clear and simple buttons.


The revered IPod; a design masterpiece in its simple aesthetics – resulting in a product that even those of the older generations can work on first go (mostly). A screen and a circular pad with a button in the centre – simple aesthetics that meet the usability principle.

DVD Player

The humble DVD player, yet another product that through its simple design has ensured maximum usability. With a slimline design the DVD player is a modern household essential that combines function and practicality.



Lidwell, W., Holden, K., & Butler, J. (2003). Aesthetic‐Usability Effect. In Universal Principles of  Design (pp. 18‐19). Massachusetts: Rockport.

 Russell N Baird, D. M. (1964). The Graphics of Communication. Orlando: Holt, Rinchart and Winston, Inc.

Tractinsky, N. (1997). Aesthetics and Apparent Usability: Empirically Assessing Cultural and Methodological Issues . Retrieved May 25, 2009, from Electronic Publications: Papers : http://www.sigchi.org/chi97/proceedings/paper/nt.htm


Self Evaluation

•May 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment
Mark Comments






Quality of the product & submission I believe this is a visually attractive and well set up blog       x  
Depth of information & discussion My information could have been more in depth – hence the average mark     x    
Quality of the conceptual underpinnings The result adheres to the conceptual ideas – it is supposed to be conceptually about learning, visuals and communication  – the format and content of the blog fulfil the concept         x
Quality of referencing Could have been better     x    

What is a Learning Portfolio?

•May 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment

A learning portfolio is a documentation or collection of one’s work, amounting to a selection that best illustrates the learning experience, the future objectives and completed work of an individual. It is a record of development; personal, educational and professional. Learning portfolio’s are invaluable; they are effectively a guide to one’s education and can assist in determining the make-up of an individual.

The development of learning portfolio can aid individuals and their learning in many ways:

 It can provide one with the ability to reflect on their work; thereby maintaining a resource for development and achieving short and long term goals. Reflecting on personal learning is integral to a successful learning process as it ensures that what individuals learn and perhaps what they need to learn is recognized and acted upon.

 Also, learning portfolio’s show growth over time, illustrating, as Stefani, Mason and Pegler (2007) state, the importance of lifelong learning. Learning is a process that should never stop, however many people, having gained a place in the workforce, neglect this need for continued and ‘updated’ learning. By completing a portfolio it ensures that individuals’ education and training remain current (as technology is constantly evolving).

In fact learning portfolios themselves have changed over time. Now e-portfolios are perhaps replacing hard copy portfolio’s as they are more relevant to today’s state of modernity. More accessible (as they can be made available online), E-portfolios are easier to transport and easier to update and transport.

Working on a portfolio enables individuals to “…visualize their learning process…illustrate it…and to think about their learning in a focused and structured way…” (Desiree,Beyaard, Verloop and Vermunt, 1982, p.7). It also aids in developing skills of selectiveness, as in constructing a portfolio focus is on the key elements of one’s journey of learning, therefore work that nest shows the learning process must be chosen.

Especially relevant to students of university level (and those in education courses), the learning portfolio is a concise and effective construction of one’s learning career. An efficient way of mapping personal growth and professional growth a portfolio is an helpful way of ensuring that students ‘learn from their mistakes’ and continue to expand.


Mason, R. Pegler, C &  Stefani, C (2007). The Educational Potential of E-Portfolios [Electronic Version] New York: Routledge.

Desiree, D. Beyaard, D. Verloop, N & Vermunt, J (1982) Functions of the Learning Portfolio in Students Teachers Learning Process.  Teacher’s Collection.

Tips and Tricks for your ‘Wordpress’ Account

•May 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Future Bloggers!

Here you have a basic ‘help sheet’ to aid you in your quest of a blog.

Creating Your Account

  •    This is the easiest part so I won’t Say much
  •   All you have to do is to log on to the WordPress home page, enter your details and Sign Up!
  •    Make sure you use your regular email so that if any future issues arise regarding logging in and passwords you know where your new password will be emailed to!

Changing Your Appearance

  •     Click on the ‘Appearance’ on the left sidebar
  •    Here there will be various themes
  •    Once you have chosen one simply click ‘Activate’
  •    On most of the themes you can change the ‘header image’
  •    You can then upload an image and crop it to fit

Adding Widgets

  •   Widgets allow you to add handy links to your blog
  •    To get to the list of widgets click on the ‘appearance’ button –
  •   Click on the ‘widgets’ button than a list of handy helpers will appear


  •    Adding ‘recent posts’ is especially helpful for those who are readers of your blog


  •      To change the tagline, blog title and date format, click on ‘settings’ and then ‘general’


  •    I recommend changing your tagline as soon as you have logged in otherwise you will have the default wordpress tagline

Posting a Blog

  •     Go to ‘Posts’
  •    Select ‘Add New’

 Adding an Image

  •     Click on ‘Upload/Insert’