Higher Education, Virtual Communities

Personalizing Higher Ed with Web Portals?

Most universities and colleges connect with students in web portal environments from recruitment/admission onwards.  Many schools are tapping into the personalization and effective information dissemination of this portal experience.

Web portals allow higher education institutions to connect students, staff and faculty in order to share a variety of information and resources that might not appear on a public website.  Believe it or not, it has replaced most paper and mail communication for courses, publications and beyond.

Educause has an interesting online publication called Web Portals and Higher Education: Technologies to Make IT Personal which details how you can optimize your web portal for communication, learning, marketing and more!


Recently I was invited to join HigherEdSpace, a “college portal and social networking site for higher education community.” It is designed to network and connect professionals, academics, students and external service providers to the post-secondary forum.  I was wondering how this website differs from LinkedIn, Facebook or other higher professional associations I use online.

Some web portals are more inviting and user friendly than others – depending on the interface and software platform. The HigherEd Space portal reminded of ULife and MyMiami web portals I have in the past.  The bottom line is that all portals attempt to connect users & house information (events, calendar, courses, etc) in a central location for the university population. But overall, I wonder how effectively web portals are utilized?  And are these platforms the best content management systems for communication and learning?

Please share YOUR experience with web portals in higher education – the good, the bad & the ugly are all welcome.

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