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Student’s Guide on How to Write a Reflective Essay

Structuring a reflective essay

❶The essay focuses on a topic that describes you appropriately. This is different than what you discuss in introduction.

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CREATING A REFLECTIVE PAPER OUTLINE AND A CORRESPONDING REFLECTION ESSAY
Understanding the difference between descriptive and reflective writing
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Is English your native language? What is your profession? Student Teacher Writer Other. Academic Assignment Writing an Essay. Writing a Research Paper. What specific skills or perspectives did you acquire as a result? These signpost questions should help kick-start your reflective process. Remember, asking yourself lots of questions is key to ensuring that you think deeply and critically about your experiences — a skill that is at the heart of writing a great reflective essay. Consider using models of reflection before, during, and after the learning process to ensure that you maintain a high standard of analysis.

For example, before you really get stuck into the process, consider questions such as: Are there any possible challenges to keep in mind? What knowledge is needed to be best prepared to approach the experience? Is the process working out as expected? Am I dealing with the accompanying challenges successfully? Is there anything that needs to be done additionally to ensure that the learning process is successful?

What am I learning from this? Your writing will be so much more coherent, your ideas conveyed with structure and clarity, and your essay will likely achieve higher marks. An outline allows you to establish the basic details that you plan to incorporate into your paper — this is great for helping you pick out any superfluous information, which can be removed entirely to make your essay succinct and to the point.

Think of the outline as a map — you plan in advance the points you wish to navigate through and discuss in your writing. Your work will more likely have a clear through line of thought, making it easier for the reader to understand. It can be considerably different from other typical essay outlines, mostly because of the varying subjects. But what remains the same, is that you need to start your outline by drafting the introduction, body and conclusion.

More on this below. Introduction As is the case with all essays, your reflective essay must begin within an introduction that contains both a hook and a thesis statement. Refer back to the opening quote of this article — did it grab your attention and encourage you to read more? The thesis statement is a brief summary of the focus of the essay, which in this case is a particular experience that influenced you significantly. Body Next up is planning the body of your essay. They key here is to put plenty of time and effort into planning the body, and you can draw on the following tips to help you do this well:.

Try adopting a chronological approach. This means working through everything you want to touch upon as it happened in time. This kind of approach will ensure that your work is systematic and coherent. Lay out the important elements of your experience in a timeline — this will then help you clearly see how to piece your narrative together. Ensure the body of your reflective essay is well focused, and contains appropriate critique and reflection.

The body should not only summarise your experience, it should explore the impact that the experience has had on your life, as well as the lessons that you have learned as a result. The emphasis should generally be on reflection as opposed to summation.

Conclusion In the conclusion of your reflective essay, you should focus on bringing your piece together by providing a summary of both the points made throughout, and what you have learned as a result. Try to include a few points on why and how your attitudes and behaviours have been changed. Consider also how your character and skills have been affected, for example: What can be concluded about your approach to specific situations?

What might you do differently in similar situations in the future? What steps have you taken to consolidate everything that you have learned from your experience? Keep in mind that your tutor will be looking out for evidence of reflection at a very high standard.

Congratulations — you now have the tools to create a thorough and accurate plan which should put you in good stead for the ultimate phase indeed of any essay, the writing process. As with all written assignments, sitting down to put pen to paper or more likely fingers to keyboard can be daunting. But if you have put in the time and effort fleshing out a thorough plan, you should be well prepared, which will make the writing process as smooth as possible.

The following points should also help ease the writing process:. But make sure you stick to your plan. As you work through your essay, present your thoughts systematically, remembering to focus on your key learning outcomes. Remember that reflective writing has a descriptive component and so must have a wide range of adjectives to draw from. Be more specific — this will make your writing more engaging.

Remember that this is a reflective task, and is the one place you can freely admit — without any repercussions — that you failed at a particular task. When assessing your essay, your tutor will expect a deep level of reflection, not a simple review of your experiences and emotion. Showing deep reflection requires you to move beyond the descriptive.

Be extremely critical about your experience and your response to it. In your evaluation and analysis, ensure that you make value judgements, incorporating ideas from outside the experience you had to guide your analysis.

Remember that you can be honest about your feelings without writing in a direct way. Use words that work for you and are aligned with your personality. Looking back, how successful has the process been?

Think about your opinions immediately after the experience and how they differ now, so that you can evaluate the difference between your immediate and current perceptions. Asking yourself such questions will help you achieve reflective writing effectively and efficiently.

It helps keeps your writing dynamic! Think about possible sources, like newspapers, surveys, books and even journal articles. Generally, the additional sources you decide to include in your work are highly dependent on your field of study.

Analysing a wide range of sources, will show that you have read widely on your subject area, that you have nuanced insight into the available literature on the subject of your essay, and that you have considered the broader implications of the literature for your essay. The incorporation of other sources into your essay also helps to show that you are aware of the multi-dimensional nature of both the learning and problem-solving process.

If you want some inspiration for writing, take a look at our example of a short reflective essay , which can serve as a useful starting point for you when you set out to write your own. To recap, the key to writing a reflective essay is demonstrating what lessons you have taken away from your experiences, and why and how you have been shaped by these lessons. The reflective thinking process begins with you — you must consciously make an effort to identify and examine your own thoughts in relation to a particular experience.

Equation of reflective essay writing

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Structuring your reflective essay so your self-reflection essay is effective. Visit us today for reflective essay advice to find out what makes a good paper.

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Using a reflective essay outline can help your writing in a few ways. An outline can help lay out exactly what details you want to use before you start writing. Reflective essay help, - Pay to have essay written. Order your custom paper now, and you will be able to view a good example on how your paper should look like, to help you write your own.

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May 19,  · How to Write a Reflective Essay With Sample Essays. Updated on August 17, Virginia Kearney. Some great advice here for writing a reflective essay. This will really help my daughter with her essay writing skills. Thanks for sharing. Reviews: An essay on "My Summer Vacation" could be a reflective essay. However, a reflective essay is not to be confused with an informative essay. While an informative essay relates facts like where you went, what you did, and how much things cost, a reflective essay is an evaluation.