This portfolio will be a polished, refined presentation of what you’ve accomplished this semester. As a whole document (or website), the idea is to contextualize your writing for your readers, and to convince them that you are a skilled and flexible literary critic. This means you’ll need to stake a claim about yourself and your work, and provide evidence of that claim (i.e. actual writing that you’ve worked on). You have a large degree of latitude with how you choose to make and present that case, but each portfolio must include these parts:

  • A  welcome page that entices readers to explore your portfolio in a paragraph or two.
  • An introduction that lays out the case you want to make about your abilities as a writer.
  • biography of yourself and your experiences reading and interpreting literature.
  • presentation portfolio with final, polished, thoroughly-proofread versions of your 4 best essays. These essays should be clearly introduced by a short description of the skills, methods, and/or accomplishments you hope to show your readers.
  • A process portfolio demonstrating some substantial revision and development of all six essays. You should offer an overall description of your process, as well as specific discussions of how you developed each individual essay (complete with a paper trail of pdfs).
  • ENGLISH MAJORS ONLY: You will eventually build your senior portfolio into this site. Instructions for this will be posted on SNoodle.

Click around on this template to find more detailed instructions about each section.

One of your primary goals is to present all this for a lay reader who has not taken ENGL 305 but is interested in your abilities as someone with strong analytical skills.  That means framing what you say in accessible terms, so that you can help your reader understand your more sophisticated “professional” written work. Think of your reader as someone who might hire you, or admit you to graduate school. Who knows… you might want to use this portfolio for such a purpose very soon!

Here are some instructions for managing WordPress, which I’ve written up for my Professional Writing class.