“E-portfolios and the development of self-regulated learning”: A case study in a Hong Kong Higher Education Institution

Mei Ying CHING

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Theses


Self-regulated learning (SRL) relates to self-generated thoughts, feelings, and behaviours that continuously amend and improve performance, aiming to accomplish self-set goals and the ability of people’s willingness to concentrate, adjust, evaluate, and manage their own behaviour. Studies strongly suggest that students’ academic success can be better achieved when the design of e-learning environments involves the consideration of SRL development. In recent years, e-portfolios are used widely and globally in higher education and have become one of the major active learning processes in self-learning online platforms that support students’ self-reflection, learning motivation, self-efficacy, and so on. There is a significant need for more studies on the full range of factors of SRL for higher education students in e-portfolios projects, including but not limited to understanding the influences, all possible factors, technical support, and students’ learning process and/or learning outcomes related to SRL.

This research study aims to collect information directly from higher education students with actual practice in and experience of e-portfolios for two consecutive semesters. The quantitative data have been collected within the Pintrich’s (2004) social–cognitive perspective of the SRL framework and used the developed self-regulation of learning self-report scale (SRL-SRS), covering the six core factors of SRL: planning, self-monitoring, evaluation, reflection, effort, and self-efficacy. The same self-report paper questionnaire was distributed to 262 undergraduate year-1 students in semester 1 and semester 2. After data filtering, pretest and posttest data obtained from 134 valid questionnaires were used for analysis. The measuring result from the Rasch model has been analysed using SPSS 21, findings included a paired sample t test and the one-within-one-between subject analysis of variance (ANOVA).

On the other hand, the qualitative research positively helps collect further information that the self-report questionnaires have not covered. The preset interview questions were designed by walking through the entire process, and issues that may affect or touch all procedures in the development of an e-portfolio are considered but not limited to those issues within the framework. A total of 6 students (1 female and 1 male are randomly selected from each group) have been invited for a private interview.

Findings from this research study support the statements and opinions of researchers in SRL with e-portfolios and fill in some of the missing information about the impact of e-portfolios on the development of students’ SRL.

We found that students’ planning has been improved after the exposure to e-portfolios and that they even apply planning to other subjects during their year-2 study. However, the students’ monitoring desire was decreased or without any improvement. Different students got different improvement in control due to the level of satisfaction. For reaction and reflection, we obtained different results from the quantitative and qualitative research. On the other hand, many factors may influence and discourage the outcome on students’ SRL, such as students’ backgrounds and personalities, universities’ curriculum designs, and course implementation. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Education
Awarding Institution
  • The Education University of Hong Kong
  • LIM, Cher Ping 林質彬, Supervisor
  • YANG, Min 楊敏, Supervisor
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Self-regulated learning
  • e-portfolios
  • Information technology
  • Higher education
  • Theses and Dissertations
  • Thesis (Ed.D.)--The Education University of Hong Kong, 2017.


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