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Article
Publication date: 1 August 2003

Tom Bourner

The purpose of this paper is to identify the main problems in assessing reflective learning and to seek ways of tackling them. Lessons are sought from HE’s long engagement…

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to identify the main problems in assessing reflective learning and to seek ways of tackling them. Lessons are sought from HE’s long engagement with critical thinking that can be transferred to reflective learning. A solution to the problems is offered that is based on a questioning approach to reflective learning. In so doing, the paper explores the nature of reflective learning and advances the idea that the distinction between “surface” and “deep” learning can be generalised to the domain of reflective learning. It concludes with some implications for the development of reflective learning.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 45 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Content available
Article
Publication date: 4 May 2021

Gustav Hägg

The purpose of the paper is to theorize how to develop student entrepreneurs' ability to reflect by means of a learning activity called the entrepreneurial diary, which…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the paper is to theorize how to develop student entrepreneurs' ability to reflect by means of a learning activity called the entrepreneurial diary, which seeks to develop self-regulated learners capable of intelligent entrepreneurial action. The importance of self-regulation in entrepreneurship is linked to the individual's ability to make judgments under conditions of uncertainty, which requires reflective thinking.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper builds on a synthesized conceptualization of three main literature strands, reflective thinking, cognitive-load theory and experiential entrepreneurship education. In addition to the synthesized conceptualization, it builds on some empirical insights derived from a venture creation master programme in which the learning activity has been developed and refined for the last seven years.

Findings

The main finding from the paper is the theoretical justification for why reflective thinking deserves an important place in the educational process and how the entrepreneurial diary as a learning activity can create a bridge between theory and practice in venture creation programmes that take an experience-based pedagogical approach. Furthermore, the study also provides some empirical insights of how students create self-awareness of their learning through the method and the metareflection reports. Self-awareness is foundational for developing conditional knowledge on why and when to make entrepreneurial decisions to balance the often action-oriented processes seen in venture creation programmes.

Originality/value

The paper provides both a practical learning activity to be used in the entrepreneurial classroom and a theoretical contribution on how entrepreneurial experience is transformed into entrepreneurial knowledge to enhance students' judgmental abilities to make entrepreneurial decisions in future entrepreneurial endeavours.

Details

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2554

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Article
Publication date: 13 October 2020

Lisa Rowe, Neil Moore and Paul McKie

This paper explores the challenges, issues and benefits of reflective practice faced by work-based practitioners undertaking negotiated experiential learning. The study…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper explores the challenges, issues and benefits of reflective practice faced by work-based practitioners undertaking negotiated experiential learning. The study focuses upon the case of a ground-breaking UK-based Senior Leader Master's Degree Apprenticeship (SLMDA) programme which requires learners to develop and apply reflective practice skills through comprehensive work-based learning and research activities. Degree apprenticeships represent a significant opportunity for providers and employers to become more closely aligned in the joint development and promotion of innovative learning opportunities, yet the efficacy of individually negotiated, experiential learning and reflective practice for senior leaders within a challenging healthcare environment remains relatively unexplored from a tripartite perspective. This paper investigates the role of reflective practice within a leading degree apprenticeship programme which embraces this pedagogic approach and considers the potential barriers and benefits for learners and their organisations.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper begins by discussing the nature of reflective practice in the workplace and explores the growing importance of this activity in contemporary organisations. Theoretical and conceptual foundations relating to experiential learning and reflective practice are analysed and discussed. The SLMDA programme and NHS case organisation are described in detail. Qualitative data drawn from semi-structured interviews undertaken with learners, employers and personal academic tutors (PATs) are then analysed to identify the key issues and challenges encountered.

Findings

The study identifies the benefits of reflective practice, explores the challenges and issues that act as barriers to reflective practice and highlights the importance of the role of the personal academic tutor (PAT) and that of employers in supporting and developing reflective practice in one of the first SLMDA programmes to launch within the UK.

Originality/value

Although reflective practice and work-based research have attracted considerable scholarly activity, investigations have overwhelmingly been focused upon professions such as teaching and nursing and have explored challenges and issues from the perspective of the provider. This study explores reflective practice from the viewpoint of learners, employers and PATs and thereby seeks to complement and expand current understanding by developing a more holistic approach. This work will inform future programme design, practitioner skills development and employer support procedures as learners plan and prepare to facilitate work-based research projects within their organisations.

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Article
Publication date: 19 September 2019

Kevin John Ions and Norma Sutcliffe

The purpose of this paper is to identify the barriers that higher education (HE) work-based learners face when constructing experiential learning claims through reflective

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the barriers that higher education (HE) work-based learners face when constructing experiential learning claims through reflective narratives.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey of 38 part-time, HE undergraduate work-based learners was conducted. A questionnaire was designed comprising Likert scale and open ended questions to capture students’ experiences of constructing experiential learning claims.

Findings

The study found that students experience several learning barriers including the diversity and complexity of reflective learning models, the solitary nature of reflective learning, problems articulating tacit knowledge in writing, emotional barriers to reflective learning, accurately recalling “historic” learning experiences and difficulties in developing the meta-competence of learning to learn.

Practical implications

Consideration should be given to assisting learners to develop the skills necessary to select and use reflective learning models that best fit particular experiential learning contexts. Learners should be encouraged to undertake group reflection in the classroom and in the workplace to enable them to write critical reflective narratives that have integrity. There should be less reliance on written reflective narratives to evidence tacit knowledge with consideration given to other methods such as practical demonstrations, videos presentations and interviews.

Originality/value

The study contributes to knowledge of the barriers that students face when constructing experiential learning claims through reflective narratives. It proposes an outline pedagogical scaffolding framework to assist learners to develop recognition of prior learning (RPL) claims to enable them to maximise opportunities for claiming credits through universities RPL processes.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

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Article
Publication date: 31 December 2000

Liz Yeomans

Writers such as Schön and Argyris have been influential in our understanding of how people and organisations learn. They contend that “real” learning only takes place when…

Abstract

Writers such as Schön and Argyris have been influential in our understanding of how people and organisations learn. They contend that “real” learning only takes place when we challenge assumptions and the taken‐for‐granted aspects of everyday working life, as well as the values on which these assumptions are based. Further, the ability of learning to learn (or “double‐loop learning” as it is sometimes called) at both an individual and an organisational level is regarded by such writers as the key skill in adapting to a fast‐changing world. With this framework in mind, professional courses such as the Advanced Professional Diploma in Public Relations at Leeds Metropolitan University have incorporated the philosophy of “reflective learning” in assessment. The assessment tool of this type of course is typically a reflective learning assignment where individual learners critically reflect on their own working practice in the light of newly acquired knowledge and skills. The assignment, at least in theory, is not an end in itself but the start of a continuous process of self‐reflection and challenging of assumptions underlying practice in everyday working life. It follows, therefore, that such an approach could have a relevance for innovation in individual working practices. This paper seeks to examine whether reflective learning conducted within an academic setting has a relevance for innovation in public relations. It draws on theories and discussion in the fields of organisational learning; reflective learning and reflective practice; a critical analysis of 25 reflective learning assignments; and six telephone interviews with public relations practitioners who have successfully completed the Advanced Professional Diploma in Public Relations at Leeds Metropolitan University. It is followed by a discussion of the link between their reflective learning and organisational learning, and suggests where innovation is most likely to occur. Finally, implications for academics and practitioners are discussed.

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

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Article
Publication date: 4 September 2017

Juhani Ukko, Sanna Hildén, Minna Saunila and Kati Tikkamäki

The purpose of the study is to investigate how organizations can exploit performance management through reflective practice to foster innovativeness and performance.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the study is to investigate how organizations can exploit performance management through reflective practice to foster innovativeness and performance.

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual framework has been designed to link the studied concepts and to explicitly indicate current research gaps in the area. Moreover, the authors have conducted interventionist case studies to understand the interconnections between theory and practice.

Findings

This study showed that there are many possibilities with which to exploit performance management through reflective practice to foster innovativeness and performance. The study has three main implications. First, reflective practice can be learned and developed. Second, reflective practice is connected to innovativeness and performance. Third, performance management through performance measurement systems can assist in targeting the reflective practice.

Originality/value

New forms of performance measurement and management are receiving increasingly amount of attention, because the traditional forms of managing organizations do not fulfill the needs of rapidly changing environment. Prior studies maintain that a performance measurement and management supports the periodic execution of the same routines in organizations where changes are small or non-existent. In these forms, the role of reflection as an individual, collective or organizational practice is emphasized.

Details

Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1832-5912

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Content available
Article
Publication date: 3 July 2017

Khar Kheng Yeoh

This Scholarship of Teaching and Learning research is a part of the larger study grant to analyze written reflections through learning log among the third and final year…

Abstract

Purpose

This Scholarship of Teaching and Learning research is a part of the larger study grant to analyze written reflections through learning log among the third and final year students undertaking BPME 3073 Entrepreneurship module in University Utara Malaysia (UUM). The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

The data collection techniques are researcher-directed textual data through reflective learning log, taken from 140 students from three classes. A thematic approach was utilized to present the reflections of the students and all data were recorded in a verbatim format.

Findings

The findings show that most students have never written a reflective log or essay in the formative assessment. As a consequence, they had difficulty in writing the reflection when being requested to do so. A total 75 (approximately 55 percent) of the reflective logs were identified as level 1 (from 1 to 5 percent) in which reflections were simply written in a descriptive manner, resulted in a balance of 61 learning logs being utilized for further analysis. The students’ reflections on their entrepreneurship’s experience systematically categorize into four different themes comprised of: the nature of entrepreneurship module, entrepreneurial characteristics, opportunity recognition, and creativity and innovation.

Research limitations/implications

As for the limitation of the study, it is important to not to underestimate the challenges of introducing a grade assessment that most of them are not familiar with in their university academic journey. Students need guidance, assurance and confidence writing something that require personal opinion, own thinking, sensitive and personal nature of narration. For most students as found out in this study, self-confessional writing is hard to come by (they dare not attempt it in the first place), only a handful appreciating the writing start with “I,” “me” as first person. More research in this study should be conducted across the university to gauge the response from the students to see if the result of this study is only applicable to this group of students or to this discipline of studies. The researchers would also like to recommend for future studies which take the form of a longitudinal study of similar kind to examine the problems and challenges with regards to promoting learning reflection at the undergraduate level.

Practical implications

Based on the result of the 61 students who had demonstrated an ability in reflective writing, it is suggested that perhaps the university should consider offering coursework that contains a component of reflective writing as part of the assessment. As such, if this is implemented, students of such ability like the one in this sample group would have been benefitted from such assessment which look at reflective ability (Greene, 2014) and which they were allowed to form a broader perspective in relation to the module undertaken. This in turns will foster the growth of reflective ability which is recognized as a learned behavior (Gustafson and Bennett, 1999). In addition, for the future exercise of this reflective learning log, the researcher opined that we should encourage our students to engage with another student (e.g. close friend) in a way that encourages talking with, questioning, or confronting, helped the reflective process by placing the learner in a safe environment in which self-revelation can take place. In addition, students were able to distance themselves from their actions, ideas and beliefs, by holding them up for scrutiny in the company of a peer with whom they are willing to take such risks (Hatton and Smith, 1995).

Originality/value

The results of this research have strongly suggested the need to urgently develop among the students the skills in writing reflectively as they go through the process of higher education which is useful in molding their future professional and entrepreneurial behavior as when they entered the job market which requires a critical reasoning ability.

Details

Journal of Research in Innovative Teaching & Learning, vol. 10 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2397-7604

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Article
Publication date: 26 June 2019

Aya Ono and Reina Ichii

This paper provides an analysis of the experiences of undergraduate business students undertaking reflective writing as a series of incremental assessments. Using Moon’s…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper provides an analysis of the experiences of undergraduate business students undertaking reflective writing as a series of incremental assessments. Using Moon’s map of learning (1999) as an analytical framework, it explores the value of reflective writing to students studying Asian culture in the business context during the first semester of 2017.

Design/methodology/approach

With 200 enrolments, the authors taught a core business course, Asian culture in the business context, in the first semester in 2017. The value of the assessments is analysed based on two data sources: written course feedback via a course survey and a combination of semi-structured interviews and focus groups. The written course feedback was collected by the university during the semester. Approximately, one-third of the students (n = 63) participated in the survey. The other data were collected through semi-structured interviews and focus groups for nine students. Ethical approval for the collection of data was obtained from the university ethics committee.

Findings

The study confirms that reflective writing enables students to make meaning of their learning and transfer it to the cultural context of business practice. In addition, the assessments help the students develop logical thinking and academic writing skills. To increase the use of reflective assignments in business programmes, further research and teaching practice is required.

Research limitations/implications

A limitation of this research was the relatively small sample size. Even though written survey feedback (n = 63) was used to complement the number of interviewees (n = 9), the findings of the data analysis may not represent the experiences of all students in the course. However, the data are valuable to bridge a gap between the existing research and teaching practice on the use of reflective writing in other disciplines and business education.

Practical implications

Although the transfer of academic knowledge to business practice is a core capability of the business programmes, business students may not obtain this during their study in the programme. Several students mentioned a lack of opportunity to apply reflective writing skills to other courses in their business degree, except one core course using a reflective essay as an assessment. This implies that the majority of the students in the degree are not exposed to situations that require them to critically evaluate, consolidate and consider what has been taught in relation to future practice.

Social implications

Further research and practice will increase the popularity of reflective writing assessments in business programmes. As Hedberg suggests, reflective practice should be integrated into all classrooms in business education. Together with analysis and action, reflection should be a core capability for managers (Hedberg 2009). In addition, the business faculty needs to work in a reflective manner that encourages students to be familiar with the reflective practice.

Originality/value

This paper analyses the pedagogical aspects of reflection based on the experience of undergraduate business students undertaking reflective writing assessments.

Details

Journal of International Education in Business, vol. 12 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-469X

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Article
Publication date: 15 March 2021

Olga Khokhotva and Iciar Elexpuru-Albizuri

The paper describes two reflective instruments: a reflective diary (RD) and a joint learning protocol (JLP) for teachers' knowledge creation in lesson study (LS), reflects…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper describes two reflective instruments: a reflective diary (RD) and a joint learning protocol (JLP) for teachers' knowledge creation in lesson study (LS), reflects on teachers' reactions and encountered challenges and draws inferences on how teachers' learning and knowledge creation could be facilitated more effectively in LS through “learning keeping.”

Design/methodology/approach

This qualitative case study of an action research project utilizes the data collected through the narrative inquiry within an LS initiative with four English as a foreign language (EFL) teachers in a school in Spain.

Findings

The study suggests that the incorporation of reflective writing in LS as a method of keeping records of teachers' individual and collective reflections should be considered “a good practice” and yet another important mechanism facilitating teachers' learning in LS.

Research limitations/implications

The study is limited by its scope since the applied LS model suggests carrying out three consecutive cycles rather than two.

Originality/value

Firstly, the two proposed instruments could be of practical value to educators and facilitators employing LS as an approach to teachers' professional learning. Secondly, the study adds to the discussion on the mechanisms fostering teachers' learning in LS by emphasizing “learning keeping” as a form of record-keeping through reflective writing. Thirdly, the study is set in the new for the LS community context, in the autonomous community of the Basque Country, Spain.

Details

International Journal for Lesson & Learning Studies, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-8253

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2001

Stephen Hackett

Looks initially at the theoretical foundations of both competency‐based training (CBT) and reflective practice, then at current approaches to CBT and reflective practice…

Abstract

Looks initially at the theoretical foundations of both competency‐based training (CBT) and reflective practice, then at current approaches to CBT and reflective practice. The compatibility of these two in educational practice, and the extent to which they might be combined in an educational or training context is discussed. CBT and reflective practice are not regarded as having a mutual equivalence in adult education and training. Rather, it is argued that they constitute two approaches within this educational field which function at different levels of teaching and learning and, as such, there exists at least the potential for them to be designed and developed so as to be complementary.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

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