Chatting about CMALT #altc

One aspect of ALTC this year was my involvement in the CMALT sessions. Through a few conversations on Twitter in the weeks leading up to ALTC I’d been asked if I could cover one of the sessions set aside for CMALT, which I happily did. However, I needed to refresh myself on a few aspects of CMALT, and the changes to the portfolio and guidance before hand. What better way that to re-read my own portfolio (as I’d probably be using it as an example, or rather my example) and the ALT guidelines.

For those writing, or considering writing, their portfolio just remember:

  • describe, evidence and reflect
  • it’s about your work, not about the importance or size of the project you worked on
  • if you were part of a team then describe, evidence, and reflect on your involvement in the team and work
  • read and consume as many portfolios that you can – ALT website has a list of the openly available CMALT portfolios (login required) – but remember that they do not reflect your work or your writing style
  • collect evidence from the moment you start thinking about CMALT, even if you don’t want to commit and/or start it yet. This makes it far easier in the long run when you do start it
  • Have a copy of the guide to hand all the time, read and re-read the section headline and what the portfolio should demonstrate in each area
  • describe, evidence and reflect – do this everwhere
  • relax, it’s an enjoyable experience even if slightly difficult – once you have evidence collected  it is far easier to decide what to use, where, and why
  • evidence can take many forms, don’t think only electronic – you can always get a scan/photo of paper source for inclusion
  • use video in your portfolio? Why not
  • it doen’t have to be open, just make sure the assessors have the username/password combination to access and assess
  • if you wnt some guidance before submission then contact ALT and they can get one of the assessors to contact you and give you some pointers
  • write the final ‘future plans’ section (non-assessed) with a mind to revisiting CMALT in three years to renew it. This will form a healthy reminder of where you were and what you were hoping to do, and this is where you start the renewal statement

From this session I learned a little about my own work and portfolio – I’ll have to revisit and renew my CMALT in the next few months so I too will have to write and re-write contextual statements, future plans, etc. but this has given me a renewed vigour in undertaking it.

I have also been approached by a few people and asked if I’d be their named second assessor – an honour, thank you! ALT will appoint the lead assessor in these instances, but I’d happily be your assessor if you want?

Much respect and thanks also to Deb Daff (@bebbaff) and her wonderful sketch from my rambling talk on CMALT (thanks Deb) – I look forward to seeing your tweet of your very own CMALT badge!

There are a number of CMALT webinars available, as well as recordings from previous ones if you’re interested – just visit the ALT CMALT website and browse away.

Image source: David Hopkins