Portfolio Presentation Requirements
The portfolio presentation is a final requirement of all Master of Public Policy (MPP) candidates. The goal of the portfolio is to present a ‘cumulative experience assessment’ that integrates the academic experience of the student in the MPP program with a reflective assessment by the student of how that experience has impacted their understanding of public policy both intellectually and practically. This goal is met by two deliverables: a portfolio submission and a portfolio presentation (both explained in greater detail below). Faculty members review the submission of the MPP candidate, some level of inquiry is given, and the candidate finalizes the process by completing an exit interview.
The general process of the portfolio requirement is as follows:
- MPP candidate is invited to a private e-portfolio website in their final semester of study (candidates who believe they are in their final semester who have not received a formal invitation to this site should contact their faculty advisor or the department chair and request an invitation). An example of the e-portfolio site can be found here: e-portfolio example.
- The MPP candidate assembles all of their learning materials during their tenure in the MPP program into a coherent portfolio. The portfolio should begin with a overview by the candidate summarizing their experience in the program, the way the portfolio is laid out for review, and identifying any major themes presented in the portfolio (concentration area for example). The candidate then submits the portfolio on their private section of the website in an electronic pdf format. Items to include in the portfolio include, but are not limited to, the following:
- research papers written for courses taken in the program
- policy white papers written for courses taken in the program
- papers or products from the course in Applied Policy Research
- documentation of other professional or scholarly achievements over the course of their enrollment in the MPP
- newspaper clippings about the individual's achievements, public service, and awards
- published articles in trade magazines or newspapers
- professional certifications, licenses, and other evidence of professional development
- evidence of presentations or attendance at meetings of relevant professional associations
- letters of commendation and letters of recommendation from supervisors or others in a position to evaluate the individual's academic and work.
- other items of importance as determined by the student and their faculty advisor
- On a separate page of the website, the candidate ‘presents’ their portfolio to the faculty by preparing a presentation. The presentation can include a variety of formats including: a powerpoint presentation with voice capture; a video presentation that is uploaded for viewing; or other methods of presenting the material that are suitable to the candidate. The e-portfolio site contains a variety of tools to aid you in presenting your materials.
- Once the portfolio and presentation have been submitted, faculty will review the materials and post comments/questions in discussion threads that attach to the specific web page on which you created your submission and presentation. The candidate will review these comments and respond where appropriate. The candidate will then be given an indication by the faculty that the presentation of the portfolio is complete.
- Once the presentation has been completed, the candidate will find a final page connected to their personal portfolio site. This page will contain an exit interview that asks the candidate to answer a few questions about their experience in the MPP program specifically, and at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth generally. Once the candidate has completed the exit interview, all of the requirements of the portfolio have been completed. Congratulations!
You will be given reinforced detailed instructions and examples on the portfolio creation and submission when you are officially invited to the e-portfolio website. This summary above should give you a good understanding of how to think about the portfolio as you begin and matriculate throughout the MPP program. As a rule-of-thumb, you should consider the following to aid you in preparing for your portfolio submission and presentation:
- Create a special ‘portfolio’ file where you place digital copies of all major papers, reports, etc. created for each course you have taken during your tenure in the MPP program.
- Include summaries of any special events or presentations you have made during your time in the MPP program.
- Consider your POL599 Internship experience and final report as examples of summative pieces that can help tie together the academic and practical experiences you have had during your MPP experience. The final report, for example, can be helpful in producing your ‘introductory’ summary at the beginning of your written portfolio submission, and it can also help you in highlighting some of the integration of what you have learned into an applied setting for your portfolio presentation.
If you follow these general guidelines you should have little difficulty in the preparation, submission, and presentation of your portfolio.