Benefits of Using ePortfolios for Authentic Assessment

Some of my notes on ePortfolios from “Innovate to Educate: System [Re]Design for Personalized Learning.”

There are 5 Essential Elements of a Personalized Learning System

  1. Flexible, Anytime/Everywhere Learning
  2. Redefine Teacher Role and Expand “Teacher”
  3. Project-Based/Authentic Learning Opportunities
  4. Student Driven Learning Path
  5. Mastery/Competency-Based Progression/Pace

ePortfolios are a collection of digital resources that:

  • provide evidence of an individual’s progress and achievements •
  • are drawn from both formal and informal learning activities •
  • are personally managed and owned by the learner •
  • can be used for review, reflection and personal development planning •
  • can be selectively accessed by other interested parties.

According to Graham Attwell, an e-portfolio has seven functions which can be mapped against different pedagogic processes:

  • recognizing,
  • recording,
  • reflecting,
  • validating,
  • presenting,
  • planning, and
  • assessing learning.

Many different types of evidence can be used in an e-portfolio and include:

  • samples of writing
  • photographs
  • video
  • research projects
  • observations by supervisors, assessors or mentors
  • reflective thinking about all these.

An e-portfolio may contain examples of the following types of content:

  • coursework
  • assessment work
  • achievement of individual learning outcomes
  • aggregated credit towards awards
  • evidence of achievement for assessment
  • planning and reflection
  • statements about other entries
  • skills and competences
  • outcomes of appraisals or interviews
  • links between entries
  • entries shared with peers, trainers or mentors
  • feedback from peers
  • other pieces of work or personal material.


  • can be transferred between employers and between learning providers
  • may more effectively assist learners with disabilities in recording evidence
  • make contact with learners easier and more efficient
  • allow for better information sharing
  • enable the learner to continue with study in a work-based environment
  • can be shared with interested parties
  • are flexible – learners choose when they work on their e-portfolio
  • can be used to create individual learning plans
  • can be used both for assessing and recording personal thinking and listening skills
  • promote creativity by encouraging learners to populate an empty repository with artifacts created in a variety of formats
  • can help learners organise their work requirements, resources and time • can help learners gather together assets from non-formal learning.

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