It was bound to happen, once the interest in electronic portfolios has bubbled widely, the big Course Management Monoliths would bring them in under their hoods.
I am not at EDCUASE (hardly seems to be any blogging from there? trying a feedster search now- hey who put all those banner ads in there?), and this is just a PR post, but coming soon, to a CMS near you… WebCT Demos New Open Source Portfolio PowerLink at EDUCAUSE 2003:
This new PowerLink for WebCT Vista is being developed using the WebCT Vista SDK, in coordination with the Open Source Portfolio Initiative (OSPI; www.theospi.org), a group advancing the use of e-portfolios. The OSPI PowerLink will be demonstrated at EDUCAUSE 2003 in Anaheim, Calif. OSPI’s founding partners include experts from the University of Minnesota and the University of Delaware and the r-smart group.
I am quite sure that Blackboard is on the same track via their “Building Block” approach.
It will be curious to see if the CMSes act as a conveyer of content to and from eportfolios, or if their game is to suck them under the password protected hood. It is an important feature of an enterprise e-portfolio tool to provide portfolio artifacts that are institutional, program, or course authenticated, going beyond what an individual self-selects to add (leaving the individual hopefully in control of the public presentation).
Next on the horizon- WebCT and Bb take a bite at blogs. Bet on it.
And why should they not now pick up on RSS? There could be feeds for course catalogs, feeds for student assignments, course announcements, etc- the database to generate the content exists now, and it should be trivial to have code spawn the feeds.