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PERFLECT: Design and Evaluation of an Electronic Development Portfolio Aimed at Supporting Self-Directed Learning

  • Jorrick BeckersEmail author
  • Diana H. J. M. Dolmans
  • Jeroen J. G. van Merriënboer
Original Paper


This design case describes the blueprints of an electronic development portfolio (PERFLECT) aimed at supporting the development of self-directed learning skills, including self-assessment of performance on learning tasks, formulation of points for improvement and future learning task selection. The design is described both in terms of theoretical foundation and practical characteristics. As part of the design process a small-scale evaluation study with 22 students of senior vocational education was conducted. Students hold positive perceptions about PERFLECT’s ability to help them self-assess their performance on learning tasks and formulate points for improvement. Furthermore, they were also satisfied with PERFLECTs usability and user-friendliness. However, students request a simplification of language use and need more support and guidance with the selection of criteria for performance assessment. Suggestions for improvement will be incorporated in the next iteration of the design. PERFLECT is a promising, user-friendly tool to support students’ development of SDL skills.


Self-directed learning Electronic development portfolio Second-order scaffolding Educational technology 



This study was funded by Kennisnet (grant number: V/OZK/51909/60079).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

All authors report no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Association for Educational Communications & Technology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jorrick Beckers
    • 1
    Email author
  • Diana H. J. M. Dolmans
    • 2
  • Jeroen J. G. van Merriënboer
    • 2
  1. 1.Welten Institute, Research Centre for Learning, Teaching and TechnologyOpen University of the NetherlandsHeerlenNetherlands
  2. 2.Maastricht UniversityMaastrichtNetherlands

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