Portefolio.jpgThe Language Center and the Français midi courses at the ILCF has introduced ePortfolios as an assessment tool in the vast majority of its classes since Autumn 2020. This has been implemented as sole assessment method or in conjunction to other more traditional methods like tests.

The e-Portfolio

An ePortfolio is a student-centred learning environment. Learners can gather, store and display learning evidence in the format of texts, photos, audio or video files. Students can use this evidence to show to the teacher their learning process and the skills they have acquired. But other uses are possible and well documented, for example in autonomous learning or job searching. Indeed, it is possible to show a future employer proof of concrete language skills on your ePortfolio.

How to proceed?

The UniNE uses the Mahara ePortfolio system. Create a profile on the https://portfolio.unine.ch website, then create a portfolio (see tutorial). Fill in the form with your objectives and the self-evaluation (a different form for each level). Add the form as a picture or a pdf on your portfolio. Then, during the semester, when you work on your L2, in class or doing homework or any other kind of activity linked to the L2 in your everyday life (tandem, watching films, chatting in the L2, travelling, etc.), gather texts, photos, or audio files of these activities to prove the skills that constitute your learning objectives for the semester. Be careful, Mahara only recognises a short selection of audio and video formats (the main ones are: 3GPP media file, FLV flsah movie, MP3 audio file, MP4 media file, OGA audio file). It is easy to change the format of your audio or video files online (e.g. https://www.freefileconvert.com/). Try to mostly upload audio files which take up less space on your Mahara account. Use video only when you have to show something. Moreover, do not use emoji in your texts as the system doesn't support them. Once collected, You need to regularly upload this evidence on your portfolio (see tutorial). Don’t forget to add reflexive commentaries on the evidence displayed in your portfolio, showing reflection on your learning strategies and goals.

Concrete example

Jane is enroled in a B1 French class. She wants to develop her listening and speaking skills because this is what is the most difficult for her. So she is going to focus her learning outside of what is asked by the teacher on listening and speaking. For example, she listens to an audiobook that she has borrowed from the E.M.A. She watches movies or the news in French, several times during the semester and writes a few lines on these activities in her journal (see tutorial), explaining how they helped, what she understood, what she still considers difficult. This allows her to see how she has improved during the semester. To practice speaking, Jane contacts Sophia, a classmate with the same objectives and they decide to meet once a week to practice their French together. Two or three times during the semester, they record 1-2 minutes of their conversation in French to add to their portfolio. Jane could also have participated in a tandem programme. In the middle of the semester, Jane decides to work on monologues. She records several short monologues where she describes her last holiday, how she lived through the lock-down, etc. She chooses the two best ones to put in her portfolio.


Mid-semester, you’ll need to share your ePortfolio (see tutorial) with your teacher who is going to check that you’ve worked on it. You’ll share it again at the end of the semester to be assessed with precise criteria like the number of learning testimonies, your learning objectives, justification of the evidence that you show and self-reflection on your learning (see tutorial to add commentaries), coherence between your objectives and the evidence, progression and regular work on your portfolio. You could get extra bonus points if you are creative and add evidence from activities that you have accomplished outside of the classroom and the homework designed by the teacher.


The Mahara manual is very detailed and explains the main fuctions of the platform.


During the semester, you can ask your questions per email to our teaching assistant. She will answer all your concrete enquires and help solve your problems with Mahara. 


You can contact Yuliana any time by sending an email to bertha.paredes@unine.ch