Guidelines for keeping a reflective diary/journal & writing up critical reflective incidents (aimed at nurses but would be of interest to Hospitality, Sports & Tourism students too)
1. Keep a journal of experiences over the year.
2. Write up the journal entry/incident.
3. Below the entry write up your reflections / analysis notes of the situation.
4. Write up experiences the same day if possible.
5. Use actual dialogue wherever possible to capture the situation.
6. Make a habit of writing up at least one experience per work day/shift.
7. Balance problematic experiences with satisfying experience.
8. Challenge yourself at least once a day about something that you normally do without thought / take for granted.
9. Ask yourself 'why do I do that?' (i.e. make the normal problematic)
10. Always endeavour to be open and honest with yourself - find the authentic 'you' to do the writing.
Ask yourself these questions:
What did I learn from the situation? In what way has it assisted my learning to be a health practitioner? Could the situation have been better managed?
Johns (1992) & Carper (1978) in P. Palmer, S. Burns and C. Bulman, C., Reflective Practice in Nursing (1994). London. Blackwell Scientific Publications. p. 112.
How to write reflectively
Reflective writing - Deakin Unversity
Includes an explanation of what reflective writing is and how to write reflectively; useful phrases for reflecting; and a video showing how a student uses reflection in his studies.
Reflective writing: a basic introduction - University of Portsmouth (PDF, 132 KB; opens in a new window)
Provides a useful introduction to reflective writing; a suggested structure, with an example; it includes vocabulary and phrases you could use.
Reflective journal – Oxford Brookes University (PDF, 58 KB; opens in a new window)
Explains how to think about your work reflectively, critically and analytically, and how to structure your reflective writing; it also includes some useful vocabulary.
Reflective journal - RMIT (opens in a new window)
An online tutorial modelling the reflective process and demonstrating how to integrate references and analysis in your writing; includes examples.
Reflective journal - RMIT (PDF, 75.2 KB; opens in a new window)
A strategy for approaching reflective writing.
The difference between essays, reports and reflective journals - RMIT (PDF, 75.9 KB; opens in a new window)
Explains how the following aspects differ: purpose, topic, audience and format.
Reflective writing - University of New South Wales (opens in a new window)
Explains what reflective writing is and how to do it; it also includes examples of reflective writing.
Tools for reflection - Open University (opens in a new window)
Includes reflective questions to ask yourself at the start of a course, mid-course and at the end of a course.
Genres in academic writing: Reflective writing - Andy Gillett, Using English for academic purposes.
Includes a discussion of reflective writing and a possible structure of a reflective report.