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Keywords:

  • electronic portfolio;
  • reflective writing;
  • audit;
  • higher education;
  • continued professional development;
  • professional portfolio

Abstract

Recent legislative changes, that affect all healthcare practitioners in New Zealand, have resulted in mandatory audits of practitioners who are now required to provide evidence of competence and continued professional development in the form of a professional portfolio. These changes were the motivation for our development of an electronic portfolio (ePortfolio) suitable for both undergraduate and life-long learning. Bachelor of Oral Health (BOH) students, studying to qualify as Dental Hygienists and Dental Therapists, and BOH teaching staff (who held registrations in Dental Hygiene, Dental Therapy and Dentistry) trialled the use of a personal ePortfolio for advancing their academic and professional development. The ePortfolio enables BOH students to collect evidence of their achievements and personal reflections throughout their 3 years of undergraduate study, culminating in registration and the award of an Annual Practising Certificate (APC). The ePortfolio was designed to allow users to store information and then select appropriate material to be displayed or published, thus assisting health practitioners to present high-quality evidence of their participation and achievements, and to meet the professional requirements for their APC.