Implementing eportfolios requires that you clearly define the purpose of the eportfolio, as this determines the types of ‘features’ or ‘functionalities’ of the eportfolio system or tool.

What is an eportfolio system?An eportfolio system or tool is a software system designed to help a person develop their eportfolio, and:

  • Collect and store information and files from a variety of sources
  • Select from a range of information sources and files to make different presentations for different audiences
  • Reflect and describe why specific pieces of information have been collected in the eportfolio and/or why learning experiences have been  useful
  • Connect with others to share and get feedback, and to collaborate with others on parts of the eportfolio

Eportfolio software systems work best when integrated with other elearning and information systems such as a:

  • learning management systems (LMS) which enable people to easily access learning materials and share their eportfolio content for assessment
  • grades/results management systems, HR systems, and/or identification or registration databases so individuals only need to log in/enter personal data once when using a range of systems (through single sign-on).

What system should I use?Selecting the right eportfolio system will depend on the purpose of the eportfolio, which then helps to determine the key features of the eportfolio system. To view a range of eportfolio systems which are available, and what functionalities each have, go to the “Choosing ePortfolio Software” website – more popular eportfolio systems being used in Australia include:

Other e-tools being used as an eportfolio include:

What should I think about when implementing an eportfolio system?A person is usually ‘issued’ their eportfolio from an organisation. However, most people view the eportfolio as belonging to the learner, employee or members, and others are ‘invited’ to only access the parts of the eportfolio which they require for to support the person’s learning and assessment, and not necessarily the whole eportfolio.Eportfolios offer a ‘learner-centred, learner-focussed’ approach through improved ongoing support and feedback via the eportfolio.  This approach works particularly well for distance and workplace learners, and helps people develop lifelong learning skills.  However, this requires that educators, managers and mentors to take a ‘learning-centred’ approach.Other considerations when implementing an eportfolio include:

  • Privacy – ensure users’ personal and private information is only released and/or accessible to those people who have been given permission to access it
  • Interoperability – means that the eportfolio system integrates with other systems, and can be easily used with mobile devices such as smart phones and tablets
  • Storage – enough storage space is provided to cater for the different file types needed to be stored in the eportfolio
  • Ownership – ensure users understand how to protect the ownership of their own information online (Creative Commons Licenses can be useful for this), as well as how to appropriately use other people’s information online
  • Portability – the eportfolio is easily exportable to another eportfolio system or format, or that the learner has ongoing access to the eportfolio system beyond their time with the issuing organisation.

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Eportfolio Services offers the following services to help you effectively implement an eportfolio system:


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