This study is in the e-commerce domain. Dimensions of ecommerce are wide-ranging, from transaction processing systems, supply chain management systems, enterprise resource planning systems, customer relationship management systems, knowledge management systems to business intelligent systems [7, 8].
Moreover, e-commerce is interdisciplinary. Human-computer interaction for example, draws from cognitive psychology/customer behavior research, software engineering, database engineering and analytics. Returning to the question of how to scaffold transformative learning in developing the skills highlighted by , especially innovation opportunities, we find that:
a) not much research have focused on the role of formative assessment in shaping goal-based metacognition;
b) research work by the learning sciences communities aimed at developing creativity, such as by , is scaffolded by guiding questions. Hence, we should focus on the design of guiding questions. In this exploratory study, we aim to scaffold strategic technology assessment (which precedes design) and the discovery of opportunities, such as those identified by  in Table 1. Although m-commerce has increasingly become more pervasive and disruptive, the scope for this study is only on Web-based e-commerce.
B. Research question
In our prior research in Software design and testing , we find that patterns are useful in helping students to theorize and model. Theorizing and prototyping are via Web design. The modeling outcomes differ in degrees of breadth and depth. For this study, our research question is how will ecommerce Web design engineering scaffolded by design thinking goal-based reflective scaffolds and embedded formative assessments influence the learning of strategic technology assessments and innovational outcomes? Web design engineering requires systematic, disciplined and quantifiable approaches towards successful development of high-quality, ubiquitously usable Web-based systems and applications.
Hence, it requires design. More importantly, sustainable design creates long-term value. As such, ecommerce Web design engineering provides sufficient avenue for students to hypothesize, experiment with and learn [3, 4]’s skills, and perhaps more sustainable services.
First, [3, 4]’s skills are useful to the design and development of systems and services in an increasingly digitalized world; applicable/extendable to MOOCs and adaptive yet self-regulatory student modelling (e.g. by ). Second, students learn how to relate business to technology and society through design. By focusing on discovery of opportunities crucial to strategic technology assessment and innovation, we hope to in the future, provide a natural motivation to explore smart services (co)-design and reification to improve quality of life.
We scope our study to scaffolding transfer of learning with regards to learning and designing for e-commerce through Web design engineering. We are concerned with the front end, i.e., the user interface and interaction designs, where the learning of skills highlighted by  can fully be explored and improved. In the next section, we review related work on the design and scaffolding.