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Activity: 40 mins: Pen portraits

Cloud created by:

Rebecca Galley
30 July 2013

In this activity you will write 4-6 pen portraits which describe a series of student personas. You can use these to help inform and guide your design decisions.

1. Begin by finding some pictures of people who could be your students. Remember that if you expect to share these pictures with others you need to ask permission of the individual involved or use a Creatice Commons licenced picture (free to use and share). Having a picture will help you keep you pen-portrait as real as possible.

2. Next, complete in the sections below (add any you think are missing). Be descriptive but keep each section relatively short so that each of your pen portraits fits on one side of paper. Make sure that your personas represent the full extents of your student group (i.e. in terms of motivations, skills, expectations and needs) so that they properly test your design thinking. While these pen portraits are imaginary, it is likley that you will be using your memories of some real students; make sure that no real students can be identified!

Copy and paste the text below into your own document or download the pdf below.


Age and demographic

Educational background

Why are they studying?

Technology use and expertise

Literacy and numeracy skills

Soft skills knowledge and experience (e.g. communicaton, problem solving, leadership, followership, time management etc)

Study skills knowledge and experience (e.g. locating information, referencing, note taking, synthesis, analysis, evaluation of information etc)

Assumptions and perceptions of learning

Relationships with other learners

What might put them off?

Extra content

Embedded Content

Resource pdf

Resource pdf

added by Rebecca Galley


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