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Pharmacy students’ perceptions of ePortfolios in pharmacy education

Cherie Lucas, Jim Woulfe, John M Lonie, Kylie A Williams, Lorraine Smith

Abstract

Aims: To investigate perceptions of an ePortfolio structure, its utility to support pharmacy student learning, development of reflective capacity, and attainment of professional competencies.

Methods: Mixed-methods two-phase study: Phase 1 (Quantitative): pre- and post-use, 6-item student survey; Phase 2 (Qualitative): 45-minute student focus group.

Results: Survey (n=49, RR 82%) and focus group respondents (n=12) provided their perceptions of ePortfolios. Statistically significant findings between Week 1 and Week 14 indicated that in addition to a time consuming exercise, students perceived that the current structure of the ePortfolio did not fully support their learning; development of their reflective capacity; self-directed learning skills; and professional practice.

Conclusions: Pharmacy students perceived the ePortfolio needed improvements to reach its full potential. Students indicated that maintaining an ePortfolio is a useful tool to track professional competencies, linking digital evidence and reflections. Proposed suggestions were identified for improvement that would enable them to meet curricular competencies.


Keywords

Portfolios; Professional Competency; Reflection


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