Eportfolios have become a well-established tool across UK HE in recognition of their potential to promote reflection and increase student control of learning (Blackburn and Hakel, 2006; Shroff et al., 2013), whilst supporting complex learning and assessment processes (Roberts et al., 2016). There has been particular interest in eportfolios within professional courses as a vehicle for developing and assessing professional standards and making connections between learning in university and placement settings supported by the tri-partite relationship between student, university tutor and practice mentor (Birks et al., 2016; McCready, 2005).
However, it is clear that that the benefits of introducing eportfolios are by no means automatic and a range of policy, institutional and practice factors have been identified as important to promoting successful eportfolio integration (Joyes et. al., 2010; Australian eportfolio project, 2008). Related to practice learning and assessment in fields such as healthcare, the importance of acknowledging the complexity of defining and assessing competencies has been noted (Lurie, 2011; Green et al., 2014), along with the impact of assessment on reflection, and the dangers of box-ticking approaches (Driessen, 2017; Green et al., 2014).
The introduction and use of eportfolios is clearly complex and this short presentation introduces a case study of eportfolio development to support practice learning and assessment involving a broad range of stakeholders within multiple institutions and practice settings. We will report on the ePad project, an ongoing collaboration between five universities (Bradford, Huddersfield, Hull, Leeds, Leeds Beckett) to develop a shared Practice Assessment Document for Nursing students across West Yorkshire and Humber Healthcare settings. Common assessment documentation had been used across the consortium for over a decade and the project aimed to build on this existing collaboration by moving the assessment framework online whilst continuing to incorporate assessment by registered mentors. After two years of development, ePad was released to students, placement mentors and staff in September 2017 through the eportfolio PebblePad.
1. Provide a brief overview of ePad, outlining how this is used in practice with mentors in healthcare settings;
2. Summarise the collaborative process of development;
3. Share lessons learned along the way about eportfolio development and collaboration within large-scale e-learning projects;
4. Outline the results of early evaluation with students and mentors;
5. Summarise plans for further development and attempt to set ePad within a broader approach to learning with eportfolios.
Session content: evaluation and reflection
The session is based on the presenters’ experiences as members of the ePad project steering group for their respective institutions and their insights into the process of development and implementation with students, staff and mentors. It will report on the results of evaluation activities with stakeholders.
Australian eportfolio project (2008) Stage 1 Final Project Report. Available at: http://www.eportfoliopractice.qut.edu.au/docs/Aep_Final_Report/chapter4.pdf [Accessed 12 March 2018].
Birks, M., Hartin, P., Woods, C., Emmanuel, E. and Hitchins, M. (2016). Students’ perceptions of the use of eportfolios in nursing and midwifery education. Nurse education in practice, 18, 46-51.
Blackburn, J. L. and Hakel, M. D. (2006) Enhancing self regulation and goal orientation with ePortfolios. In Jafari, A. and Kaufman, C. (Eds.). Handbook of Research on ePortfolios. Hershey: Idea Group Reference, pp. 83-89.
Driessen, E. (2017). Do portfolios have a future? Advances in Health Sciences Education, 22(1), 221-228.
Green, J., Wyllie, A. and Jackson, D. (2014) Electronic portfolios in nursing education: A review of the literature. Nurse education in practice, 14, 4-8.
Joyes, G., Gray, L. and Hartnell-Young, E. (2010) Effective practice with e-portfolios: How can the UK experience inform practice? In Same places, different spaces. Proceedings ascilite, Auckland 2009, pp. 486-495.
Lurie, S. (2011) History and practice of competency-based assessment. Medical Education, 46, 49-57.
McCready, T. (2006) Portfolios and the assessment if competence in nursing: a literature review. International journal of nursing studies, 44, 143-151.
Roberts, P., Maor, D. and Herrington, J. (2016) ePortfolio-based learning environments: Recommendations for effective scaffolding of reflective thinking in Higher Education. Educational technology and society, 19(4), 22-33.