Developing digital portfolios: how ICT can facilitate pupil talk about learning

Kate Wall, S.a Higgins, J Miller

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The Digital Portfolio Project at Newcastle University aimed over one year (2002/2003) to support teachers in producing, storing and accessing assessment portfolios of learner’s work using ICT. A major element of this was the investigation of the impact these portfolios had on teachers and learners, particularly focusing on how they could be used to facilitate pupil talk about the learning process and metacognition. This paper draws on evidence of pupil views collected as part of 14 teacher-led case studies exploring digital portfolio development in classrooms across the primary age phase (3-11 years). The teachers all approached the task of developing digital portfolios in different ways and the variety of end products was large; however, the common result was the value placed on using the portfolio as a tool of reflection and celebration of children’s learning. As part of the data collection teachers were encouraged to gather pupil views about the digital portfolio learning process. These comments provide an interesting and surprisingly analytical perspective of the research and learning process not commonly considered in the academic community. They reveal astute comprehension regarding the possible implications of using ICT to document achievements, the positive effects of recording classroom activities using digital media and how using this evidence to reflect on the activities can be a meaningful and worthwhile process. The pupils recognise the important role that ICT takes in this process and also appreciated the possibilities for themselves and their peers as learners. This paper documents the pupils’ views and uses them to review the strength of the Digital Portfolio process and the benefits of using it in the primary classroom.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Internet Society
Subtitle of host publicationAdvances in Learning, Commerce and Security
Place of PublicationSouthampton
PublisherWIT Press
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9781853127120
Publication statusPublished - 2004


  • ICT
  • digital portfolios
  • learning


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