We all reflect daily; we examine and calculate each of our decisions. From buying groceries to completing research papers, we go through viable options for choosing the most suitable one. Doing so ensures the application of our primary knowledge or even helps us develop new insights.
Critical thinking is a skill essential in various professional fields; in-depth understanding of the concepts of the fields and analysing to seek the best solution. Similarly, for critical reflection, students introspect their level of knowledge and understanding of their field of study and where they see themselves in the future.
There are many tasks that students are assigned as a part of critical reflective practice, like learning the objective of the program, developing reflection journals, progress reports, and group or individual presentations. Such tasks aim to help students access their learning and find areas for improvement.
Such observations provided a learning leeway for the individuals to critically reflect on the knowledge and raise questions about issues of concern. Critical reflections are part of the coursework for every academic program; they are just given out in different formats, critical reflection essays, for example. You will come across many such writings throughout your academic and professional career. Let’s learn more about it, shall we?
Many of you would wonder what the difference between reflection and critical reflection is? When we reflect on an event or a future goal, we try to define the ‘why’ and ‘how’ behind it. But, for critical reflection, we must access all the aspects of the event to decipher our ideas before and after the event. Students reflect on their learning after a lab class or a lecture for critical academic reflection.
Wisdom can be learned in three ways:
Quote by Confucius
For critical thinking, you use teaching material such as class notes, texts, and dialogues to analyse our perspectives, connect theories to present behaviours, look for origins and catalysts, and pinpoint the source of shortcomings. A reading task, a report of an event, or expressive writing are not critical reflections. Instead, the idea is to alter your perspective on an issue and alter your attitude for the future.
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Critical reflection addresses practice; we think about, examine, assess, and re-evaluate strategy and decision-making for an event or operation. It encourages a culture of regular self-evaluation, which aids in identifying areas for growth and better results. For practical research fields, critical reflection is an effective learning method.
Critical events can be pleasant or unpleasant; they can be unique exchanges like clinical lab classes or common events like daily lectures. Writing a critical reflection essay, for example, is based on incidents that can be a struggle, as it might highlight our flaws, viewpoints, and actions. Despite the positive/negative aspects of such writing, it is indeed useful for a professional analysis of one’s mindset at a point in time.
Tip: Even if you’re writing about your own experiences and lessons, your target audience could be professional. Your style should be professional or casual; see the task requirements or inquire the professor about it before you start writing.
Reading a critical reflection that you composed in the past might help you realise how far you’ve come and what you’ve learnt. The reflective learning approach is a gradual process for enhancing understanding, and it’s more likely to generate favourable outcomes. A critical reflection analysed at a certain time is especially useful in research and development programs.
The critical reflection framework in a standard format of composing such a document. It includes the what, so what, and now what? Approach to the incidents. You will describe the incident or their learnings. Next, write about their perspective or what you deciphered from the event. At last, include future scopes or discussions based on the findings.
Professors who advocate for a critical viewpoint were chastised for being more concerned with broad ideals than practical instructions. Yet, there appears to be a rising focus on practicality and rising instances of classes structured to foster critical reflection in the curriculum and the overall course management.
Management professors count on the evolving body of literature under which the widely used management theories and approaches are revised with time. Numerous critical analysis methods are being adapted into management education. Students are assigned tasks that include a collective pursuit and exchange of knowledge that helps them reflect on collective operations. You can also refer to the attached critical reflection essay example below.
Managers and supervisors who exercise reflective thinking use their consciousness, conduct, and relationships as a medium of knowledge. This management style especially promotes the significance of emotional maturity and productivity in those who pursue it.
Critical reflective learning helps students learn and reflect on their understanding of their current and future endeavours that are most likely to help their professional life. Adopting such methods is to simplify the theoretical knowledge to fit each student’s understanding. It allows students to pose questions about their learnings and find answers to the areas they find difficult. Such are the most important qualities of a manager.
The students might answer their questions while reflecting; there are also instances of students feeling lost and in despair. While contemplating the professional context of their study and the experience, students might feel the need to switch their majors. In hindsight, such practice helps students find their program of interest rather than settling for believing it was the best choice.
The phrase “employability” is a tad misleading. It’s often referred to as the employment abilities like developing a solid employment profile and practising effective interview methods. It’s also referring to the basic skills that all professions focus on enrolling and promoting employees. Many companies would also want individuals to be proficient in a specific skill or area, such as management, economics, or architecture.
Lifelong learning is useful due to the current and upcoming professional trends, where professionals must adjust to variable duties. Taking accountability for one’s professional enhancement, as well as understanding, is a necessary skill. The awareness of self-identity and personal skills is important in the modern professional world.
Reflection is a crucial part of this process; developing reflective skills makes one aware of their ability to learn and accept responsibility to resolve their shortcomings. The important thing is that many of these reflection-based ideas and actions emerge from education, yet it does not have to be majorly intellectual reasoning; they must be more than conceptual or speculative. The mix of academic and critical thinking with workers’ real-world learnings makes reflecting a useful tool.
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Charles writes blogs and articles for students who are facing problems with their management assignments. His articles have been featured on several websites. He has contributed to the academic enhancement of students from the University of Oxford, University of Cambridge, University College London, etc. He joined the team of My Assignment Services as a consulting expert and now is a full-time academic help provider. His expertise in the field of management covers topics like leadership management, human resource management, business management and several others. His blogs focus on solving the most complex of the queries and simplifying the processes.
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