Show Your Own Gold

A European Concept to Visualize and Reflect One’s Vocational Biography Using Digital Media

“The Tree of Life”


At the Karlsruhe Trainers Workshop, the portuguese researchers Aldo Passarinho and Tiago Caldas Nunes presented the results of a Focus Group, with the invited trainers. They have different profiles that may be found suitable for the project goals. They also gave some interesting inputs for the course planning, regarding motivation, storytelling, writing for the web, using social media, among other topics.

In order to develop the workshop, the researchers established a partnership with the Institute of Employment and Professional Training (IEFP), which participated in defining a target group, among young unemployed people registered at the local unemployment center.



Prof. Aldo Passarinho at a meeting with Dr. Fernando Romba, director of the Beja’s Institute of Employment and Professional Training (IEFP – Beja)

The team of researchers and trainers developed a Course Curriculum to be applied to the target group. As a result, the curriculum is composed of 8 sessions to be held during the 22 hours course.

For all the sessions the team elaborated key activities, identified the resources needed and the trainers profile and skills required. They also stablished goals to achieve and corresponded outcomes. The Course Curriculum plan can be viewed in the documents below:

Course Curriculum …………………………

  • Session No. 1 (2 hours) – Presentation: Presentation of trainees and trainers; Presentation of the project and the Vocational Biography Using Digital Media; Examples of memories that can be highlighted in a Vocational Biography Using Digital Media. Session01_EN
  • Session No. 2 (3 hours) – My Tree of life: i) Oral exploration of the images and objects that each of the trainees brought into the memory box; ii) Filling the timeline based on the “tree of life” metaphor; iii) Oral narrative of the biographical route drawn on the tree of life. Session02_EN
  • Session No. 3 (3 hours) – Digital media to build memory narratives: Use the “tree” metaphor to prepare the recording of the narrative; Identify and synthesize key moments; Bringing and photographing documentation; “Drawing my Life” using analogue and digital drawing tools. Session03_EN
  • Session No. 4A (2 hours) – Make up, stylish: Make up hair and stylish; Make over. Session04-A_EN
  • Session No. 4B (2 hours) – Photo shoot: Photo shoot session – Booking; Publicity photography; Make over. Session04-B_EN
  • Session No. 5A (2 hours) – Turning poin: i) Turning point; ii) script / story board; iii) autobiographic video. Session05-A_EN
  • Session No. 5B (2 hours) – Pre-production: i) Pre-Production; ii) posture; iii) assertiveness. Session05-B_EN
  • Session No. 6A (2 hours) – Audio-visual production – Video: Audio-visual language conventions. Techniques overview. Lighting and recording skills. Session06-A_EN
  • Session No. 6B (2 hours) – Audio-visual production – Sound: Audio-visual language conventions. Techniques overview. Sound capture skills. Session06-B_EN
  • Session No. 7A (2 hours) – Social media: i) Writing for the web; ii) Social Media. Session07-A_EN
  • Session No. 7B (2 hours) – Online portfolio: i) Media platforms; iii) Portfolio. Session07-B_EN
  • Session No. 8 (3 hours) –  Networking: Networking event with individual pitch presentation. Session08_EN


The team has worked with a group of young people who are looking for jobs, after concluding their course. The results are far more positive than expected initially by the researchers, as long as it was possible to unveil interesting aspects of their life experiences. Those aspects, highlighted during the course using digital media, can contribute to the individuals vocational biographies.

In order to captivate the interest in this experimental sessions to be tested, the team organized a general overview presentation, namely the Session 01 (2 hours), both to explain the aim of the project and identify the highlights of the individuals’ vocational biographies. During this session, the researchers and trainers used a kind of a session “kick-off” talking about their own vocational biography, as an example to show the potentiality of the sessions ahead.


During a second session, Session 02 (3 hours) – My tree of life narrative, the target group trainees were asked to reflect on their personal vocational biography by means of a “tree of life” metaphor. At this point they filled up a tree structure in order to highlight the key events, achievements, experiences that modeled their individual route.


After they have filled the schematic tree, the trainees will use it at an outline to prepare the digital narrative, identifying and synthesizing key moments of their lives. At this point they are asked to bring objects and/or documentation to be photographed, as a starting point to draw their life route using both analogue and digital drawing tools. This activity takes place at Session 03 (3 hours) – Digital media to build memory narratives.


In order to improve their self-esteem and raise the chances to cause a good impression at a possible job interview, they attended Session 04A and 04B (2 + 2 hours) – Make up, stylish and photo shoot. One of the outcomes of this session is to have a set of photographs to be used in personal vocational curriculums, social media, or other digital platforms. The aim is to obtain a kind of a professional model book, with several photographs that will highlight the key features of the individual. That is why the trainees are asked to bring extra objects or even pets to the session, if that’s important for their identity and lifestyle.


At this point of the course, the trainees are supposed to be able to summarize their vocational biographies. Therefore, the Turning point session – Session 05A and 05B (2 + 2  hours) – is planned to help the development of a script and/or a storyboard, aiming the production on an autobiographical video. During this session they also work the pre-production of the digital narrative, correction of posture and assertiveness.


They use the information organized in the previous sessions to work on an Audio-visual productionSession 06A and 06B (2 + 2 hours). The trainers for this session have to be skilled to handle video cameras, as well as video editing software to be able to help the trainees to prepare their vocational biographies on digital video. The trainers deliver an overview on audio-visual language conventions, lighting, sound and recording techniques.


The following video is an example of the digital narratives produced during the workshop:

The course couldn’t be complete without the writing practice – Session 07A and 07B (2 + 2 hours) – Writing for web and Online Portfolio. In this session the trainees have to fill their digital presence with written texts in order to summarize their vocational biography. These texts are meant to be used among social media platforms, especially the ones more professional oriented, such as LinkedIn. The trainees also used the photographs captured during the photo shoot of Session 04.


The final event – Session 08Networking event – is designed to give the opportunity to the trainees to present themselves to the community. It is expected to contribute and promote the relationship between trainees and stakeholders, aiming the development of interpersonal skills.

See the overview video that summarize the course sessions:

/Invited Speaker at the Multiplier Training Event

  • Dr. João Couvaneiro (ANQEP, Portugal)


// Project Team //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////


  • Aldo Passarinho (Bio)
  • Tiago Caldas Nunes (Bio)

/Experts Panel Members

  • Professor Vito Carioca, PhD (President of IPBeja)
  • Dr. Fernando Romba (Director – IEFP, Beja)


  • Ana Rita Sousa (Bio)
  • Micael Lança (Bio)
  • Ricardo Granjeia (Bio)

/Project Assistants

  • António Peleja (Bio)
  • Leonor Nobre (Bio)