ePortfolio; Reflections and Suggestions

IMG_20170504_123133Assessment in the PYP is guided by a variety of publications. The most important of course are MTPYPH, Standards and Practices, and Assessment in the PYP.  Support of the rationale to use portfolios as part of the Reporting and Assessed curriculum can be found in all of these documents eg.:

Schools have a responsibility to show evidence of student learning. As an example, portfolios are one method of collecting and storing information that can be used to document and assess student progress and achievement 1

At its best, a portfolio can be a powerful tool that enhances, learning,  reflection, and understanding. Nevertheless, I have always felt that this way of documenting and learning about myself as a learner always favors a certain type of learners. Students who are not fluid in their handwriting tend to use much of their energy to just produce their writing, limiting them from sharing their understandings and the depth of their knowledge. 2

In recent years educators have been trying to overcome this predicament in various ways, we have made outstanding art portfolios, we have tried Teacher and Student selected portfolios, with various success stories, however, none of these have produced a sustainable model that would empower our students. We strive to create a learning environment where every student has a unique voice, that they are co-creating the choices they make thus having a genuine ownership of their learning.

Finally after years of promise #edtech is enabling us with a variety of solutions, the third generation of ePortfolios are truly transforming the way we think about a portfolio. An ePortfolio (electronic portfolio) is an electronic collection of evidence that shows your learning journey over time. Portfolios usually relate to specific time of your lifelong learning

Advocates of ePortfolios claim they are the biggest
software evolution in education since the creation of
learning management systems. According to Love, McKean
and Gathercoal (2004), ePortfolios may have the most
significant effect on education since the introduction of
formal schooling. But, as with any software, numerous
aspects need to be considered for a successful

This generation of software is transforming education because they are platform and vendor independent, allowing users to interact with them in a manner that is usable to them. So we have moved from solutions that require users to adapt to the technology to #edtech that adapts to users and that is the reason why it will change everything.

Not only are we now able to use of touch-enabled devices with voice recording, picture taking, video recording, annotation, typing, and drawing already built-in but we can also seamlessly interact with purposeful software. This negates teachers from planning for the portfolio, allowing us to have authentic learning tasks that are then reflected on. The possibilities for every student to build a true process portfolio are limited only by our imagination and access to devices.


Having access to devices and creating a natural flow for students to access these devices to create their portfolios is never a cookie cutter case. There isn’t a one-sized solution that would work for all the learners, classes or schools. However, there are some solutions that can be recommended;

shared devices

  • make sure that all children have access to portfolio center or designate a device per center
  • plan for time to allow students to reflect, what are the other students doing whilst not using the device
  • make sure your students can log their usage of devices easily so that you can check who still needs a turn

1 to 1 programmes

  • Create a natural flow into your lessons that allow for individual reflections, journaling/video-recording.
  • Create calm spaces where students can choose to work collaboratively or individually

But most importantly

Give feedback and be present on the digital platform, teachers role as a model digital citizen is imperative to facilitate our youths towards best practices. 

Making the PYP Happen: A Curriculum Framework for International Primary Education. Vol 1. 2nd ed. Geneva: International Baccalaureate; 2009. https://books.google.co.th/books?id=ueAAngAACAAJ. Accessed September 25, 2017. [Source]
Creative writing on computers, grade 1-4. Playful learning in grade 2. Arne Trageton. http://www.arnetrageton.no/Tekstskaping/Artiklar/CreativewritingoncomputersGrade2.htm. Published 1999. Accessed September 27, 2017.
D2L ePortfolio Learner Guide • D2L Brightspace Training. D2L Brightspace Training. http://learningd2l.com/eportfolio-learner-guide/. Published March 17, 2017. Accessed September 26, 2017.
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