reflective writing ideas

reflective writing ideas

Reflective Writing: Exploring Personal Experiences and Insights

1. Introduction

This book is aimed at developing an understanding of what reflective writing is, and what is involved in the process of writing reflectively. For the purpose of this book, the term ‘reflection’ is used to refer to a reasoned and analytical form of thinking and contemplation about life experiences, leading to a decision or a course of action (Brookfield, 1998). In this sense, reflective writing is an exploration of understanding one’s self and an explanation of actions through self-awareness, critiquing, and solving problems (Jasper, 2007). Reflective writing involves a great deal of self-understanding. In a traditional academic essay, the evidence you present is what you have heard or read. In comparison, a reflective essay will additionally require your expression of what you have thought, heard, or read, and how you have changed because of those thoughts.

2. Benefits of Reflective Writing

– Developing Metacognition: Reflective writing provides an opportunity for the writer to further develop their metacognitive skills – that is the ability to think about and control one’s own thinking. As we make sense of our world through our writing, new possibilities for action will become apparent. We can then go back and alter our thinking and so our writing, in an iterative process that will provide greater insight and clarity. This type of reflective strategy often requires a shift in our habits of thought – from simply reporting on the events that have happened, to questioning our knowledge and how we have acquired it. By doing this we often find that many of the problems we encounter have solutions that are obvious, or are a product of our own making. The challenge is changing them.

– Capturing the “Moment” and setting the stage for insight: Within the rushing stream of thoughts and feelings that accompany our experiences, there are significant moments – a moment with a friend, a success at work, a near miss or failure. By pausing to reflect upon these events and their meaning, we can uncover hidden layers of significance that may move us towards a fresh perception or a new behavior. Capturing these moments on paper provides a unique opportunity to catalogue events and our reactions to them, and then chart the changes in our perceptions, attitudes or behaviors over time.

The benefits of reflective writing are many; some of the most commonly noted include:

3. Techniques for Effective Reflection

By this, it indicates that not only is it important what happened, but how it was solved. This raises an important point concerning meaningful reflection – it is not enough to understand the nature of a problem. The response to it is significant. This, in essence, means posing further questions. In asking the right type of question of a situation, it is possible to understand and learn something of real value. For instance, using a model of structured reflection, one can look at a past experience in order to understand and be aware of the factors in the experience, to review the experience with consideration of what was good and what was bad about it, to conclude what sense can be made of it, and most importantly, to use the entire process as a means to decide what to do in the future. Any of the mentioned reflective models provide a framework in which to pose a self-inquiry of a situation. It is crucial to the reflective process that the right kind of question is asked. Failure to question meaningfully results in a vague understanding of the experience and hence, no real learning.

4. Applying Reflective Writing in Various Fields

In fact, you every single use option source. One of them being the very source that you are making the account on and using for the quiz. This source states that evidence-based reflection can be used to help apply new knowledge to a situation which results in a changed clinical practice. An example of this would be a nurse attended an educational session on improving nutritional habits for patients undergoing chemotherapy. She writes an entry that outlines the session and what she learned. At her next routine clinic visit with a current chemotherapy patient, she will recall the session and be able to recommend specific dietary changes to help cope with the side effects of chemotherapy. This is a clear identifiable outcome that the patient may benefit from. This question source also provides a dental hygienist studying for a degree in dental therapy. He explains how writing a reflective account on an incident with a patient who suffered a postoperative hemorrhage helped him to look at the seriousness of events and understand what caused the hemorrhage to occur. From there, he created an action plan and set objectives of what he would do if a similar situation occurred in the future. This resulted in the learning and changed knowledge being transferable to a similar situation as described in the reflective account.

5. Conclusion

My research into this subject has also given me a better understanding of the concept of transformative learning. Transformative learning is achieved when a person’s perspective is changed as a result of the interpretation of an experience. This can potentially have lasting effects on a person’s worldview and even impact the way they act in similar situations in the years to come. Through reflective writing, students can be guided towards experiences that had a high likelihood of transformative learning. They can identify key learning experiences and examine them closely to better understand the event and the reactions. This can be helpful in prompting deeper examination of a subject and potentially changing the beliefs and attitudes of an individual on that topic.

Expert learning can be looked at when the learning from a particular undertaking leads to a change in the ability to perform in a similar task. This means that when learning has occurred, upon reflection of a related experience, we would anticipate a better outcome. Through my genuine experiences and research on this topic, it is clear that expert learning is involved in such tasks and is greatly enhanced by reflective writing. During sessions where instructors are discussing the development of expert skills, there can be confusion from learners regarding exactly what it involves. Demonstrating that it is a type of lifelong learning where we can adapt skills and knowledge to a task under specific conditions, students can be left confused about how best to achieve this. Considering reflective learning is an excellent platform to clarify any confusion, as it involves analyzing, and if necessary, changing past and present experiences to improve the likelihood of success for a task in the future.

Reflective writing has come to be a regular part of the training in most degrees. It is a kind of writing where we can think back on what we have learned and relate it to the hypothesis. By thinking back, we are more likely to change data in unpredictable structures and make the right moves. This is the claim to fame of expert learning.

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