Celebrating Student Excellence: Reflect Eportfolio Showcase and Awards

Yesterday, April 8th, 2021, the Teaching Enhancement Unit (TEU) at DCU hosted the annual Eportfolio Student Showcase and Awards event.

These annual awards have been an integral event of the eportfolio intiative in DCU since its launch in 2016. The Showcase is a celebration of student excellence in eportfolio practice and all students from programmes using the Reflect learning portfolio (based on the Mahara platform) were invited to enter. Students could submit an eportfolio developed for a module during 2020/2021 or develop one specifically for the Showcase. 

The DCU eportfolio eterns ran a social media campaign to promote the event and this, as well as the increasing numbers of DCU students now using Reflect to support alternative and authentic assessment, resulted in a 33% increase in entrants over the previous year.  

A panel of judges reviewed submissions based on the following criteria:

  • Effective showcase of knowledge/skills/attributes through relevant argument and artefacts
  • Level of reflection
  • Design and originality

The judging panel was impressed this year with the excellent standard of entries from all Faculties and the increased use of rich media to showcase students’ knowledge and skills. The digital skills of students were evident in the use of embedded images and videos, clean navigation, and the degree of creativity and personalisation. Judges comments included:

 “Very engaging for reader; great mix and use of artefacts to express learning; comprehensive reflections”, “very informative, using different types of media, creatively presented, “evidence of learning and growth through reflection”. 

These comments speak to the authentic representation of learning; allowing students connect their learning, to reflect on their learning, and to intentionally engage with their learning as it is happening (Rhodes, 2018). 

A snapshot of all submitted entries can be viewed in this video carousel…

Ten students were shortlisted for the top prizes. Billy Kelly, Dean of Teaching & Learning, recognised these students for their excellent work and virtually presented the awards in front of faculty and peers. 

The overall winner was Chelsea Thompson, who developed her eportfolio as part of the requirements for the Bachelor of Education programme in DCU’s Institute of Education. The judges agreed that this was an all-round excellent eportfolio which surpassed the competition criteria.

Laura Furlong, also from the Institute of Education, Ore Jalaade, DCU Business School, and Lucyann Kehoe, Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences were also recognised for their rich and innovative eportfolios.

We would like to thank all of the students who submitted entries and look forward to seeing even more creative and critically reflective examples of Loop Reflect over the next year. We would also like to acknowledge our colleague Lisa Donaldson who organised the showcase event and leads the use of and support for Loop Reflect within and across DCU.


Rhodes, T. (2018). Lift every voice: ePortfolios for creating and integratingInternational Journal of ePortfolio8(2), 87-89.