Process Portfolio

The Journey

The Process Portfolio, or PP, is 40 % of the final mark and it is the testimony of the student's artistic journey during the course. It is not intended to be of polished, refined, or even resolved work; final work is presented for the Exhibition component of the course. The PP is a collection of carefully selected materials which document the students experimentation, exploration, manipulation and development of a variety of visual arts activities during the two-year course.

For final submission and uploading info go to E submission Process Portfolio

What does the PP contain?

Pages from the Visual Journal can be included in the PP as well as from other sketchbooks, notebooks, loose drawings, folios documenting the development of both resolved and unresolved works. The Visual Journal itself is not assessed but it is key in providing the bulk of raw material when compiling the screens for the PP.

The PP doesn't have a set format, It is presented for assessment on screen but it can be compiled from various sketchbooks and other sources. Some students will create their PP entirely on screen, others will scan journal pages and most will do a combination of both. For more on this topic go to Process Portfolio Format

Examples of student Portfolios

Visit the student gallery pages for really interesting student examples in the  Process Portfolio Gallery

Art Making Forms

There is a requirement that encourages students to work across a range of media in the PP, however, this is not a particularly wide range and most teachers already include exposure to at least this many different media and techniques. The art making forms table breaks art forms into 3 main categories of 2D forms, 3D forms and lens based or electronic media. Go to Art Making Forms Table

SL students should work with at least two art-making forms from separate columns of the table.
HL students with at least three art-making forms, selected from a minimum of two columns of the table.

So for example if a HL student has worked with clay, printmaking and painting, she has already met the distribution requirements. Go to the page on Art Making Forms Table for many more examples of different art making forms.

Two-dimensional forms

Three-dimensional forms

Lens-based, electronic and screen-based forms

  • Drawing
  • Painting
  • Printmaking
  • Graphics
  • Sculpture
  • Designed Objects
  • Site specific/ ephemeral
  • Textiles
  • Time based and sequential art
  • Lens media
  • Digital/ screen based
  • Lens-less media

"Double dipping" is allowed!!

 Work that appears in the Exhibition may be included in the PP, clearly labelled as " my own work for exhibition, title, medium, size"

students can and should include developmental stages of work and various related experiments, including "failures", and are  allowed to show the final stages and the completed work for work in the PP screens submitted.

On page 47 of the Visual Arts Guide (for first examinations 2017) under Submitting assessment work, the regulation regarding “double‐dipping” between the exhibition and process portfolio component has been revised, permitting the use of images of resolved work from the exhibition in the process portfolio as long as they are identified as such with an appropriate annotation or label, i,.e  Make sure the work is labelled like all other images!


Students submit a given number of screens rather than pages. There is no set specification as to how many words etc. but a balance of visual and written content is desirable. Writing should be clearly legible with fonts not less than 12 pt. Organise screens in a manner that gives the examiner the clearest, most coherent narrative of the development rather than organizing them by criteria.

Although the number of screens differ for HL and SL, the assessment criteria are the same.

SL students submit 9–18 screens
HL students submit 13–25 screens

The assessment criteria for the PP are shown in the table below. For more detailed breakdown of the marks go to PP Assessment Criteria, and to take a closer look at individual criteria try these pages:

Critical Investigation 

Reviewing, Reflecting, Refining 

Process Portfolio Format 


Every image used must be appropriately referenced to acknowledge the title, artist, medium, date (where this information is known) and the source from which the image was retrieved, following the protocol of the referencing style chosen by the school. Sources should be cited in text and students should include a sources page in addition to required screens. For more complete info on referencing go to Referencing and Citing Sources 

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Comments 22

Vandita Varjangbhay 23 August 2017 - 10:51

Dear Heather
I have some students who have 25 screens for their process, could they include a 26th screen for list of sources or should they include the reference list as 25th screen.

Heather McReynolds 24 August 2017 - 14:34

Vandita, I think you could do either, the assessed work is max 25 screens for HL but the sources page is not assessed.

Heba Yosri 26 October 2017 - 12:17

Hi Heather,
isn't it right that students should record the sources on each screen?

Heather McReynolds 27 October 2017 - 12:04

yes Heba, in text citation is recommended. see sources page for format to follow

Vandita Varjangbhay 29 August 2017 - 17:43

Thank you.

Heba Yosri 26 October 2017 - 10:14

Hi Heather,
I am a bit confused about the coherency of the PP screens, would you please explain how to meet this part?

Heather McReynolds 26 October 2017 - 10:46

Hi Heba, coherency is only an assessed criteria for the exhibition, for the PP it is not required that it forms a "coherent body of work"-however I do find that students who show less processes but more in depth exploration in the PP end up with a more "coherent" portfolio. Its not neccessary for every screen to explore something entirely different,...

Heba Yosri 15 November 2017 - 10:21

Thank you Heather!
I have another question about the sequence of presenting the PP screens, Is it preferable to order the screens in a way to meet the criteria order? and I can find some screens of my students that could meet two criteria, is it possible?

Heather McReynolds 15 November 2017 - 19:13

Of course it is possible! The screens don't need to be in a specific order, but what students can do is put headers or highlights to reference to the criteria ;)

Ina Isnaedi 10 January 2018 - 05:29

Hi Heather! Hoping you are well! I was searching through any details or clarification about the amount of art work that is required to be explained in terms of their processes in the process portfolio. Do each of the artwork that will be presented in the Exhibition component, have to be explained in the Process Portfolio? Looking forward to your kind advice. Thank you!

Heather McReynolds 12 January 2018 - 00:10

Hi Ina, no the PP is reviewed independently of the Exhibition so not neccessary to document all exhibition work...also work that is not included in the show can go in the PP.

Ina Isnaedi 12 January 2018 - 04:59

Dear Heather,
Thank you for your much needed feedback! We can now go forward with more confidence.

Heba Yosri 14 February 2018 - 07:26

Hi Heather,
Hoping you re well! Is there a recommended number of screens for each criterion?
as I read such thing in the Oxford visual arts book, and if the student didnot meet that number , does it affect the grade?

Heather McReynolds 14 February 2018 - 10:21

I believe the marking is more holistic, but a good suggestion is try to meet each criteria for each art making form explored...

RAJU DUBE 16 February 2018 - 06:31

Hi Heather,
is it a good idea to include a study on watercolors and acrylic in the PP or is it too simple?

Heather McReynolds 16 February 2018 - 11:55

Raju, nothing is too simple, its the quality of the exploration, refer to the assessment criteria PP

RAJU DUBE 17 February 2018 - 10:47

Okayyy, thank you

Dian Ritter 27 February 2018 - 09:50

Is it possible to submit a video within the Process Portfolio? If so, in what format, size?

Heather McReynolds 27 February 2018 - 15:31

No Dian, its not possible, only a PDF, no embedded links. But students can show screenshots and stills in the PP.

RAJU DUBE 2 March 2018 - 05:13

hi Heather, could I get some complete process portfolio samples, please?

Heather McReynolds 4 March 2018 - 10:10

Raju, go to
to see examples, they are not the entire PDF but you certainly get a sense of the range.

Rebecca Blatter 16 April 2018 - 17:02

Question: In prior material it explained that a HL student who DID NOT use all 3 of the art making forms required couldn't receive above a certain score. Is that still the case, and if so, what is the highest score an HL student can get if they don't meet that criteria?

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