What is an e-Portfolio?
An e-portfolio, or electronic portfolio, is a visual representation of your design and engineering skills presented through a collection of your key engineering projects or work experiences.
Why create an e-portfolio?
Portfolios can be a very effective way for students to market their talent to potential employers and graduate programs! For engineering students, this is a great opportunity to demonstrate your understanding of technical concepts and the skills you have developed.
What should I include?
- You can include samples of projects from your curriculum, work experience, independent projects, student organizations, community service, or other experiential learning that help demonstrate your problem solving, creativity, and engineering abilities, specifically those related to a position you are applying for. When deciding what to include consider your audience!
- Quality versus quantity! Select a few high quality projects; it is better to have a couple really good examples than lots of mediocre ones.
- Use a combination of text, pictures, video, graphs, charts, or other visual elements to show your use of things such as CAD drawings, sketches, product specifications, analysis, prototypes, and testing in your project. This multimedia approach will really bring your projects to life and showcase your skills.
- Show your thought process and decision making at various stages of the project. For example, for a mechanical design project, show first draft sketches, then AutoCAD drawings, and then a photo of the finished project. You may also include some graphical representation of your analysis.
- Make sure you are clear on what your specific role and responsibilities were in any project and highlight those.
- Your portfolio can also include your resume, as well as a list of relevant courses and skills. Note: You may want to remove personal contact information (phone, email, address) from your resume depending on how you want to share your portfolio and any privacy concerns.
How do I create an e-portfolio?
- Portfolios can be made in PowerPoint and saved as a .pdf
- Created on your own a website, or hosted on a platform.
- Or create a portfolio in Word that can be sent as an attachment with your resume and/or cover letter. Just be sure to stay under the 24 MB size limit that most email systems use.
Three Website Possibilities:
The following resources offer free, easy to use options to create e-portfolios. They also have sample portfolios that you can look at.
What NOT to include?
- Letters of recommendation or References
- Any work or information that is proprietary or confidential, including anything covered by non-disclosure agreements • A project or writing that is co-authored without written permission from contributors
- Materials that are NOT related to work or education – keep it professional!
- Start with a home page – Introduce yourself and pique the employer’s interest with a well-designed home page.
- Table of contents should be included so the portfolio is easy to navigate and information can be located quickly.
- Keep it simple – Use text as needed to explain your process. It should be easy to read with interesting visuals, not vast blocks of text.
- Clear, concise descriptions - Links, graphs, photos, etc., should all be clearly labeled so the reader understands what is in each one.
- Be consistent – Develop a look that carries throughout you portfolio and unifies it. This will help you convey a sense of who you are, including your ability to present information in an organized, logical, professional manner.
- Test! – Verify that everything on your site functions as it should, including any links you have used. Test periodically and maintain as needed. Update with new, relevant projects as appropriate.
- Print out your e-portfolio and bring it with you to interviews referring to it when appropriate.
- Include the web address of your portfolio on your resume below your e-mail address or at the bottom of your resume you can add “Electronic portfolio available at http:/list link here”
- Get into the habit of collecting documentation on projects as you go along, so you are building your portfolio and your ability to showcase your engineering skills.