Since the early 1980s, a paradigm shift, caused by the work undertaken in the field of cognitive psychology, has occurred. This shift is known as the move from teacher-centered instruction to learner-centered or learning-centered instruction, and emphasizes the importance of building new knowledge on previous ones, interacting with peers, making meaningful and reflective learning and being engaged in his own path to foster learning. This new vision of teaching has created a need for new learning and assessment instruments that are better adapted to these pedagogical realities. In this context, the electronic portfolio or e-portfolio is one of the most versatile and effective tools that have been proposed for this purpose. More specifically, the interest in e-portfolios has grown considerably with the emergence of the competency-based approach and portfolio-based competency assessments. The purpose of this paper is to describe a semantic-based representation of e-portfolios, defined on the basis of official e-portfolio standards and specifications. Moreover, a comparative study of several well-known e-portfolio solutions has been carried out based on different facets, such as functional features, technical and organizational features. The objective is to identify those features that are mostly supported by e-portfolio solution providers and accordingly to gain a fairly accurate idea of the common structure of e-portfolios. In addition, the authors take advantage of an already implemented ontological model describing competency-related characteristics of learners and learning objects and combine it with the e-portfolio ontology, with a view to support a more reliable and authentic competency assessment.
The proposed e-portfolio ontology was built following the ontology development methodology Methontology (Fernandez et al., 1997). In addition, it was constructed using the Protégé ontology environment (Protégé, 2007) and was implemented in OWL (Web Ontology Language) (Antoniou and Harmelen, 2004).
The proposed e-portfolio ontology provides humans with a shared vocabulary that enables capturing the most important elements in e-portfolios and serves as the basis for the semantic interoperability for machines.
The main advantage of the e-portfolio ontology lies in its ability to provide a common and semantically enriched representation of e-portfolio artifacts, thus facilitating the interoperability and exchange of competency evidences between different learning systems and platforms. In addition, capturing the semantics of e-portfolios helps to make them utilizable by intelligent applications.
Rezgui, K., Mhiri, H. and Ghédira, K. (2018), "Towards a common and semantic representation of e-portfolios", Data Technologies and Applications, Vol. 52 No. 4, pp. 520-538. https://doi.org/10.1108/DTA-01-2018-0008Download as .RIS
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