Digital Ethics Principles in ePortfolios

The recent rapid response to remote delivery in educational institutions as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic highlights the urgent need for the articulation of best practices in digital ethics. Digital ethics underpins all activity in the online environment and interacts with other important digital concepts, such as digital literacies, digital citizenship, and digital identity. The use of ePortfolios provide an exemplar of the many and various ways digital ethics impact our students and, as such, is the focus of this document.

This resource was created by a task force and published in 2020 to guide students, professionals, educators, administrators, and platform providers in navigating ePortfolio practices across ten principles of digital ethics. These principles are illustrated in the graphic below. Click on the principle you are interested in learning more about to read a short summary abstract. To see the full text of this principle, follow the link contained in that abstract. If you would like to review the full document, you can begin here.

Click on any of the boxes for further info about the principles.

This resource was created by the AAEEBL Digital Ethics Task Force: Amy Cicchino (Auburn University), Megan Haskins (Auburn University), Megan Crowley-Watson (Edward Waters College), Elaine Gray (Appalachian State University), Morgan Gresham (University of South Florida), Kristina Hoeppner (Catalyst, New Zealand), Kevin Kelly (San Francisco State University), Megan Mize (Old Dominion University), Christine Slade (University of Queensland), Heather Stuart (Auburn University), and Sarah Zurhellen (Appalachian State University). This homepage was built by Alexi Orchard.

How to Contribute to This Document and the Field

This document represents a year-long project led by the AAEEBL Digital Ethics Task Force. A year is not long enough to represent digital ethics in its entirety. Further, our topic (digital ethics) is a fluid one that is going to change as technologies advance and legal and socio-political contexts evolve. We need contribution from the AAEEBL community to continue to develop this resource.

If you would like to contribute to these principles by suggesting additional principles, strategies, resources, or scenarios, please email with suggested updates. Please include the following information in your email:

  • Where in the existing document you would place this addition?
  • What does this addition contribute to the overall document?
  • Who is the intended audience for the resource?

If you would like to join the Digital Task Force Committee, please look for the open call next summer.

Twitter Chat: ePortfolio Ownership and Ethics

AAEEBL Global Twitter Chat: ePortfolio Ownership and Ethics November 4-5, 2019 (see times below)

This global Twitter chat will have 3 live chat times (listed below) with a slow chat between each session, ending at Midnight GMT on November 5, 2019. Join us by following and posting on Twitter using the hashtag #eportchat.

Description: Who owns an eportfolio?  the student? the institution? a program? an instructor?  A foundational aspect of ePortfolio practice is an emphasis on student ownership, which fosters student agency, metacognitive skills, active learning, and integration of experiences. All of these principles promote deeper learning. However, when ePortfolio use is tied to program or course requirements, are we ethically aligned to the principles and stated values of eportfolio experience? In this twitter chat, we will explore the tension among ePortfolio ownership, ethics, and common practices that support ePortfolio initiatives.

chart of chat times for different global regions
Map showing the different time zones for the twitter chat

Twitter Chat: Defining Digital Ethics and ePortfolios

August 2019: Defining Digital Ethics and ePortfolios: Moderated by Helen L. Chen (@helenlchen), Kevin Kelly (@KevinKelly0), Misty M. Kirby (@OneLove_mk), and Samantha Veneruoso (@professorsv) and consisting of two active moderated chats (one in the North America and another in Australasia) with the #eportchat hashtag kept open for ongoing posting and participation. View the summary of our discussion and associated resources and the transcript captured in Wakelet.