Set up a WordPress.com account. You may not have time to maintain a regular blog but that’s not to say you won’t benefit from an online space to call your own. And with WordPress, you can format the template to form a website rather than a blog. It’s free too.
If you have your own wesbite, you can easily share your research interests, promote your published work and the conferences you attend/present at.
Being online, you will be easy to find and people can connect with you quickly. That can only be a good thing in a world where online visibility is almost a currency.
With WordPress, you can be more independent. Having a third party profile (like LinkedIn for example) is all well and good but is akin to being dropped off at a party by your dad. Having a WordPress account however is like you got there on your digital own – it’s much cooler in my humble opinion.
You can take that independence one step further by purchasing your own domain name. It’s easy to remap your domain name to your WordPress account. There is a small domain cost and a yearly remap cost but other than this, the webpage and hosting is free. I would recommend WiserHosting for domain names.
If you have already have heard of or even used WordPress as a blogging tool, you might not be sure of how you can create a website for yourself using the same platform. I will show you how below.
One last thing before you get started, don’t get confused by WordPress.org – that’s something different.
OK, let’s begin!
How to use WordPress to create a website
First, register at www.wordpress.com.
- Click on Get Started to register for a blog
- Name your blog…. ‘YourName.wordpress.com’, for example (or as above, add your own domain for a small fee (domain = £5-£10 per year, remap cost = around £12 per year)
- Select a simple and professional theme from the options. Don’t worry too much on choosing the right style. You can easily change it later
- Next go to the edit dashboard in WordPress admin
- Select the add pages option
- Instead of going to post blog area use the pages function
- Create three pages to start (1. an introduction page, 2. a page outlining your academic qualifications and published papers, 3. a work history page, for example).
You can recreate your CV on your website, although your colleagues might fret that you are horizon scanning for new jobs. The advantage of the online website/portfolio/blog – or whatever you want to call it – is that you can make it much more interactive than a paper CV by adding links and multimedia clips. Here are some ideas below:
- Add hyperlinks. You can add-in dynamic content by linking to the university degree module that you teach, for example. The viewer can then easily view the modules that you are delivering. You could link to published work too
- Insert video clips. If you have a short presentation that you would like to share, you can add it as a video clip. You could think about adding a PowerPoint
- Add your Twitter feed. You need to use plugins if you want to add extras like a Twitter feed to your WordPress blog. Luckily, you can do this for freebies and there are lots of other options for extras https://en.support.wordpress.com/plugins In settings, go to customize under themes. Don’t get distracted by the premium option. You don’t need that for many plugins.
Other free tools you can use
Additional tools that you can use to create an online portfolio include:
Pathbrite free and easy portfolio/website builder
Evernote as a portfolio builder
Portfolio project in WordPress (separate to your blog)
About.me another option (which collates social media accounts)
Clippings.me Portfolio for journalists, writers and bloggers