A little and often: unanticipated outcomes from an ePortfolio evaluation impacting on early identification of risk and non submission of work


  • Megan Lawton University of Wolverhampton
  • Emma Purnell University of Wolverhampton




personal development planning (PDP), ePortfolio, progression, formative feedback


Since 2005 all staff and students within the University of Wolverhampton have had access to an ePortfolio system - PebblePad. In 2007 the University ran a HEA Pathfinder Project 'embedding ePortfolio at level 1' which involved 1800 level 1 learners and 31 members of staff across all academic schools. The staff development activities used to develop teacher capabilities tried to mirror the student experience to great success. The knowledge gained from this project was then taken into a University-wide impact evaluation. The evaluation identified anticipated and unanticipated outcomes of pedagogic processes for personal development planning (PDP) and e-portfolio development. This paper will deal with two key areas: 1 the early identification of risk and 2 the reduction in non-submission of work. 

This work now feeds into the University's Blended Learning Strategy (2008). The overarching aims of this strategy are to enhance student learning and to improve each student's learning experience. This is articulated via student entitlements of which the following are directly addressed by this work: All students should be entitled to:

  • formative assessment/s opportunities on line with meaningful electronic assessment feedback;
  • have the opportunity to participate in electronic Personal Development Planning (ePDP);

The paper will look at how an ePortfolio system was used to develop learner skills, learner support issues and how staff from a central department worked with discipline-based staff to help support their students, finally addressing institutional strategy and support issues.

Author Biographies

Megan Lawton, University of Wolverhampton

Assistant Director

The Centre of Excellence in Teaching and Learning: Critical Interventions for Enhanced Learning (CIEL). The Institute for Learnig Enhancement (ILE)

Emma Purnell, University of Wolverhampton

Emma Purnell, CETL: CIEL ePortfolio advisor. Emma has presented on ePortfolio pedagogy and the learner experience both nationally and internationally. She is currently a member of two international and 2 national research projects relating to ePortfolio. Her work is featured in the JISC 'Effective practice with ePortfolios' booklet and the JISC ePortfolio info kit.




How to Cite

Lawton, M. and Purnell, E. (2010) “A little and often: unanticipated outcomes from an ePortfolio evaluation impacting on early identification of risk and non submission of work”, Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education, (2). doi: 10.47408/jldhe.v0i2.42.