5 benefits of helping your students create e-portfolios

Jan-Wolter Smit

Head of Education

“E-portfolios encourage students’ independence, responsibility, and reflection.”
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What is a student e-portfolio?

An electronic portfolio (e-portfolio) is a purposeful collection of student work, demonstrations, lessons, imagery, and multimedia that showcases students’ learning progression, achievements, and highlights what students can do. 

Almost every day you share specific lessons with your students: as homework, or as revision material, or in preparation for tests. Help you students achieve structure by taking their learning and their future into their own hands.

Why are e-portfolios beneficial for students & schools?

With an e-portfolio you have your students reflect on what they learned, how they learned it, and how much they learned. An excellent description is offered by Paulson, Paulson and Meyer, who write: “a portfolio is a laboratory where students construct meaning from their accumulated experience”. 

1. E-portfolios can help students facilitate, document, and archive their own learning. They can become a learning tool to clarify students’ educational goals, integrate and consolidate their learning through reflection, and showcase their achievements to potential future employers. 

2. You could implement a subject-specific portfolio, or a portfolio used across multiple years and/or subjects. Based on your students’ needs and wishes, you can decide what kind of portfolio to create, and what to showcase within it. An e-portfolio is easy to implement, flexible, and customisable.

3. It could be interesting for your students to use such a portfolio for career orientation and guidance purposes. They could insert documents, works, and insights relevant for their future study or career. 

It represents the perfect conversation starter during student-led conferences. Students can show and explain their study or career choices to their parents or caretakers, guiding them through their decisions with targeted examples. It empowers students to take charge of their future.

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4. E-portfolios also empower schools. E-portfolios can function as a tool for schools to evaluate programme effectiveness. They can be a useful way to organise and assess what students gained out of the programme. 

5. If you are currently working with  paper portfolios, moving into the digital realm is a natural progression. Technology makes the maintenance of portfolios easier. If you have not started with portfolios yet, it might be easier for you and your students to work directly with a digital portfolio.

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How can you help your students create their e-portfolio?

It is nice to have both words and visuals in a portfolio. In LessonUp you can do so by adding photo questions. Your students could upload screenshots of their assignments, works, and exercises within interactive slides. Furthermore, you could add some polls, to showcase your students’ opinion on relevant topics.

Pictures, videos, and audio recordings can also be part of it, if relevant. 

Once created, share the portfolio with your students through your class, and via your lesson modules. By doing so, you make sure that you and your students always have access to it, and can easily customise it & add slides to it if needed.