SCAFFOLD means SUPPORTING. This research project, therefore, aims to design an evidence-based, state-of-the-art ePortfolio that supports healthcare students in their competence development at the workplace. 

SCAFFOLD is a four-year multidisciplinary research project consisting of:

3 general transversal work packages

  • User-centered design and prototypes
  • Training and user procedures
  • Policy, legislation, and ethics

3 context-specific work packages

  • Use of multimedia and focus on interdisciplinary collaboration in mother and child care
  • Programmatic Assessment of General Practitioners’ competences
  • The educational continuum in general healthcare

and 1 overarching work package

  • Project management: to monitor and promote cohesion between all work packages

During the SCAFFOLD-project, 4 doctoral students will delve into the scientific literature and into specific aspects of current ePortfolios. The new, evidence-based insights will provide the basis for developing the state-of-the-art ePortfolio. The impact of an ePortfolio on quality of healthcare and healthcare education at the workplace has a central role in this project.

User-centered design and prototypes

User-centered design and prototypes

This work package aims to deliver a technically and functionally validated ePortfolio prototype and proof of concept that accommodates the needs and wishes of every stakeholders group involved in workplace learning in healthcare (eg. Students, trainers,and supervisors form workplaces and educational organisations). The research group for Media, Innovation and ICT at Ghent University will is responsible for the realization of this work package, since user innovation research is central for this work. This package commences from exploring and defining ePortfolios requirements for workplace learning and assessment in healthcare curricula. Afterwards, these requirements will be translated into design opportunities. Several design aspects will be evaluated in a real-life setting, and design commendations will be provided based on these evaluations. Currently, there is no company developing ePortfolios involved as partner in the project, the prototype will be developed by a still to be determined developer once requirements for the proof of concept have been formulated.

Work package team 1: Dr. Anissa All (Researcher), Prof. Dr Lieven De Marez (Promotor project).

Training and user procedures

Training and user procedures

The aim of this work package is to develop online operating procedures and evidence-based training programs to empower ePortfolio users in their different roles in the workplace (learning, assessment, supervision).. This l work package strives, from an educational perspective, to align and test generic procedures and agreements around ePortfolio design by involving the various stakeholders (students, teachers, trainers, workplace supervisors and institutional organisations). The research in this work package will comprise a broad perspective and will increase our understanding about  learning, assessment, and supervision process required for delivering high quality healthcare education by using ePortfolios, or embedded in the delivery of high quality healthcare education through ePortfolios.

Work package team 2: Prof. dr. Lieven De Marez (PhD promotor), dr. Mieke Embo (PhD promotor), Prof. dr. Tammy Schellens (PhD hoofdpromotor), Prof. Dr. Martin Valcke (SBO-Scaffold hoofdpromotor), Sofie Van Ostaeyen (Researcher en PhD student).

Policy, Legislation, and Ethics

Policy, Legislation, and Ethics

The research group Law & Technology will map policy, legal, and ethical challenges of using ePortfolios in the different healthcare curricula. They will develop a legal compliance framework and a code of ethics to ground ePortfolio implementation in the different workplace learning settings.

Work package team 3: Prof. dr. Eva Lievens (Promotor project), Lisse Van Acker (Researcher).

Use of multimedia and focus on interdisciplinary collaboration in mother and child care

Use of multimedia and focus on interdisciplinary collaboration in mother and child care

During a doctoral project, the ePortfolio proof-of-concepts will be validated in the multidisciplinary setting of pediatric, obstetrics and gynaecology training programs by developing and validating a specific competency framework. Besides implementing a multimedia assessment tool, this work package will also explore how an ePortfolio can stimulate interdisciplinary collaboration within this healthcare setting.

Work package team 4: Prof. dr. Martin Valcke (PhD promotor), Prof. Dr. Koen Norga (PhD promotor), dr. Mieke Embo (PhD co-promotor);  Marieke Robbrecht (Researcher and PhD student), Prof. Dr. Koenraad Smets (Doctoral Advisory Comittee), Prof. dr. Myriam Van Winckel (PhD hoofdpromotor), Prof. Dr. Steven Weyers (Promotor project, Doctoral Advisory Comittee).

Joint PhD: UGent and UAntwerpen

Programmatic Assessment of General Practitioners’ medical competences

Programmatic Assessment of General Practitioners’ medical competences

During a doctoral project, the ePortfolio proof-of-concepts will be validated in the context of General Practitioner training programs. This work package has different aims. Firstly, the proof-of-concept ePortfolio will be validated in view of van der Vleuten’s programmatic assessment model. This model sequences assessment tools (from workplace-based assessment to multiple-choice tests) combined with feedback (peer feedback, multi-source feedback, patient satisfaction surveys) and self-reflection. Secondly, the researchers will investigate how formative and summative assessment can be combined in a programmatic ePortfolio assessment. Thirdly, this work package will explore the use of a programmatic lifelong learning ePortfolio.

Work package team 5: Andreou Vasiliki (Researcher and PhDstudent), Prof. dr. Birgitte Schoenmakers (PhD hoofdpromotor), Prof. dr. Jan Eggermont (PhD promotor), Dr. Sanne Peters (PhD co-promotor), Prof. dr. Martin Valcke (PhD promotor), Prof. Dr. Geraldine Clarebout (Doctoral Advisory Comittee), Prof. Dr. Inge Fourneau (Doctoral Advisory Comittee).

The educational continuum in general healthcare

The educational continuum in general healthcare

This work package aims to investigate the impact of an ePortfolio along an educational continuum following three different perspectives:

  1. Continuity between educational levels within the same healthcare profession (e.g. HBO5-nursing and bachelor nursing); and within different healthcare professions (nursing, midwifery, speech pathology, audiology, podiatrics, rehabilitation therapy, oral health)
  2. Continuity between internships at home and abroad
  3. Continuity after graduation

The ultimate goal is to visualize competency development in the newly designed state-of-the-art ePortfolio.

Work package team 6:  Dr. Mieke Embo (PhD promotor), Oona Janssens (Researcher and PhD student), Prof. dr. Martin Valcke (PhD promotor),  Prof. dr. Leen Haerens (PhD hoofdpromotor), Prof. dr. Dimitri Beeckman (Doctoral Advisory Comittee), Prof. Dr. Peter Pype (Doctoral Advisory Comittee).

Cooperation through subcontracting: Mw. Marijke Verfaillie en Mw. Frances Martens, IVV Sint-Vincentius Ghent


Project management

This overarching work package aims to monitor and promote cohesion between all work packages. Although each work package will be realised by a specific team, this work package encourages researchers to connect the results, discuss them critically, and formulate new ideas. This work package is characterized by co-creation and innovation. Besides the different research teams, the project will receive input from an extensive user group consisting of numerous experts at home and abroad. We aim to build a workplace-learning network in healthcare in order to disseminate results and to develop new projects with interested partners.

Work package team 7: Prof.dr. Martin Valcke (SBO-Scaffold project coordinator), Dr. Mieke Embo (projectmanager)

Interested in collaborating?

Our consortium has the ambition to develop a collaborative and innovative centre of expertise in the field of ePortfolios and workplace learning in healthcare education. You can contact us with questions about design, legislation, training, and research. Please contact us if you are interested in sharing expertise or collaborating in research projects at home and abroad.