Students’ conceptual understanding and attitudes towards technology and user experience before and after use of an ePortfolio

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Abstract

EPortfolio use meets institutional reporting requirements and provides an opportunity for students to demonstrate learning, showcase their strengths to future employers, and develop lifelong reflective practice. At the same time, ePortfolio use offers students repeated opportunities to develop the skills necessary for academic progress and participation in contemporary online professional environments. To ensure that any ePortfolio implementation is making a positive impact across these areas it is important to be informed about the users’ attitudes, conceptual understanding and achievements when using this pedagogical and professional tool. We report student ePortfolio use at an Australian regional university. The paper compares students’ conceptual understanding and attitudes towards technology and user experience before and after use of an ePortfolio. It provides an overview of pertinent literature, outlines the research context and methodology, followed by the comparison results. Its contribution to ePortfolio research and practice, and implications for educators and institutional decision makers are also discussed. These results highlight the importance of adopting innovative ways to reinforce the value of ePortfolio for students through external motivation until they adopt their career persona and become intrinsically motivated to embrace strategies and tools that facilitate their progression.

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Change history

  • 17 January 2020

    The original published version of this article unfortunately omitted data in Appendices 1 and 2.

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Funding

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Correspondence to Christine Slade.

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The authors declare that they have no potential conflict of interest in this study.

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Human ethics approval was given by the University of the Sunshine Coast.

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The original version of this article was revised to correct the truncated Appendices 1 and 2.

Appendices

Appendix 1: pre-use student survey

Student survey of initial expectations of ePortfolios at University of the Sunshine Coast

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Appendix 2: post-use student survey

Student survey post ePortfolio use at University of the Sunshine Coast

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Slade, C., Downer, T. Students’ conceptual understanding and attitudes towards technology and user experience before and after use of an ePortfolio. J Comput High Educ 32, 529–552 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12528-019-09245-8

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Keywords

  • ePortfolio
  • Student perspectives
  • Pre-use and post-use surveys
  • Pedagogy
  • Professional development
  • Motivation