A portfolio is not simply a collection of papers. The most important part of the portfolio is the essay of reflection or self-scrutiny. Use the papers that you included as evidence of the learning process and refer to them in your narrative. Use the questions below to help you write the self-assessment essay, which should be five pages in length:
Why did you decide to become a history major? What were your learning goals when you declared the major?
What have you learned? Include a list of the history courses that you have taken. Focus especially on skills: writing, public speaking, analysis and use of primary and secondary sources, etc.
When have you learned? Compare your mastery of skills from the time you became a history major to now.
How have you learned? What are my strengths and weaknesses as a learner in history courses? What do the papers in the portfolio say about your strengths and weaknesses as a writer?
How have you changed as a person after taking history courses? Consider intellectual, personal and ethical changes. To what extent have your courses contributed to your preparations for lifelong learning and civic-minded citizenship?