Giving students an eDGE: Focusing on ePortfolios for Graduate Employability



Universities are placing increased attention on providing students with ePortfolios and online teaching platforms to enhance learning and employability. The aim of this paper is to investigate the views of dietetic students on the usefulness of PebblePad as a learning platform and ePortfolio tool for evidencing graduate competency and enhancing employability. This research was conducted within a multi-component design-based research framework. PebblePad was introduced to the [blinded] Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics four-year degree in 2016. Students in years 1 and 3 enrolled in courses utilising PebblePad in 2016 and 2017 were invited to complete an online survey at the conclusion of each course. Surveys were completed by 116 students (2016 n=50; 2017 n=66). Students perceived that PebblePad could impact on their employability through supporting their learning as well as assisting their understanding and competency development as a professional. This was more evident in Year 3 students than Year 1. The aspects of PebblePad perceived as most beneficial for employability were the ability to: 1) collate experiences and assessment; 2) evidence dietetic competencies via ‘tagging’; and 3) facilitate reflection. The least beneficial aspects were: 1) usability and navigation of PebblePad; 2) lack of clarity around using PebblePad to evidence employability; and 3) belief that required reflections were excessive. ePortfolios and learning platforms such as PebblePad are perceived by students to be useful for evidencing employability, with potential improvements in assessment design further enhancing their use.


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Author Biographies

  • Lana Mitchell, Griffith University

    Lana Mitchell is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Health Sciences and Social Work at Griffith University (Australia) and a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Her research interests include enhancing the development of the dietetics and allied health workforce, evidence-based practice in dietetics, and design-based development of nutrition and dietetics curricula.


  • Chris Campbell, Griffith University

    Chris Campbell is a Senior Lecturer within Learning Futures/Griffith Online at Griffith University (Australia) and a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Her research interests include researching new and emerging educational technologies in higher education contexts.


  • Roshan Rigby

    Roshan Rigby is a PhD Candidate in the School of Health Sciences and Social Work at Griffith University (Australia) and Menzies Health Institute Queensland (Australia). Her research interests include enhancing the dietetics workforce and exploring novel approaches to education and health service delivery.


  • Lauren T Williams, Griffith University

    Lauren T. Williams is a Professor in the School of Health Sciences and Social Work at Griffith University (Australia) and a researcher at Menzies Health Institute Queensland (Australia). She is a Fellow of Dietitians Australia. Her research interests include the dietetics and allied health workforce, evidence-based practice in dietetics, and design-based development of nutrition and dietetics curricula.



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How to Cite

Giving students an eDGE: Focusing on ePortfolios for Graduate Employability. (2021). Journal of Teaching and Learning for Graduate Employability, 12(2), 316-331.