We see, then, that in 2015, we still have to ask “What’s it All About?” The answer to that, I believe, will differ depending on the context. Is it only one more teaching practice? Or do eportfolios have significance not only in but also beyond classroom practices?
If we look at the various contexts in which eportfolios have significance, we may be able, as a field, to agree on a statement about the meaning and significance of “eportfolio” and we may then energize not only ourselves with this new awareness, but become better able to frame our discourse on campus about eportfolios.
Those eportfolios contexts may be stated as these four:
Learning – what is eportfolio’s meaning for learning for both learners and teachers.
Institutional assessment – how do eportfolios affect institutional assessment?
Technology in education – how are eportfolios different form other technologies used in education?
Culture and economy – what is the cultural significance of eportfolios?
In these four contexts, the lens through which we see the meaning of eportfolios differs, and the lens in number four – culture and economy – differs among countries as well.
To define eportfolios from just one context undercuts the broader importance and implications of eportfolios.