Have you ever come across an example of a reflective essay paper where a student failed miserably? Did you take time to detect why the examiner gave a poor grade? Learning from someone else's experience is the best thing to do, and that is why we want to share with you some tips on how to write a reflective essay that will be successful.
Reflective essay writing was never a joke. It involves student’s own experience and how they see it. It is a way to show the academic representatives what kind of person you really are.
Why is it needed? This kind of write-ups provokes students to think deeply about themselves - who they really are, how they have changed, and how different circumstances have changed them. If you dedicate a significant amount of time pondering your poor grades in school, you already have the basics of reflective writing. Keep reading this tutorial to find more reflective essay tips or you can order an essay using our platform.
What is reflective thinking?
This refers to how you respond to experiences in life. It is basically the processing stage where you think and learn simultaneously. While there are no hard or fast rules of reflective thinking, one thing is obvious: there are several questions that you must explore and find answers. It begins with the identification and examination of one's thoughts followed by an assessment of the words and ideas.
This requires a reminiscence of past experiences and knowledge of the subject matter. You must figure out why and how you think in a particular way. Meanwhile, you get to ponder over your attitudes, beliefs, hypotheses, and values in order to create a firm base of what you are about to put down on a paper.
What to focus on in your paper?
Like an image that you can see in the mirror, you must recognize the value you bring forth to each one of your experiences. Thus, you are able to clarify critical relationships between what you already knew and what a situation is teaching you. As a result, you become a proactive, alert, and critical student.
In short, when struggling with how to write a reflective essay, try to express the following:
- Response to feelings and thoughts
- Response to events, opinions, new ideas, and events
- Derivation of meaning from what you've learned in class
- Clarification of what you've learned
- Exploration of a topic
- Opportunity for gaining self-knowledge
Reflective Essay Writing Tips
Before you start writing a reflective essay, ask yourself several questions regarding why your subject matters to you and why it keeps you inspired.
- Provide a description of what has happened and why. It should tell a lesson and talk about what you have learned.
- Create a setting by talking about the environment. Explain the limitations and cultural points if these are applicable.
- Describe the feelings and ask yourself about what senses come up and what thoughts become relevant.
- Provide explanations if something is unclear for the general audience.
- Provide evaluation about what has been good and what negatives have taken place to affect your author’s experience.
- Working with a conclusion part, ask yourself about what can be made of the situation.
- Keep your tone reflective and analytical.
- Create an outline with the keynotes or certain arguments that will help you provide all the necessary information.
How to structure a reflective essay
As stated earlier, in such an essay, you must examine experience and explore how the circumstances changed your life or helped you to grow. The structure might differ slightly depending on the target audience. For instance, a college paper is slightly different than a magazine column. The latter has a broader audience, and most of the readers might not have sufficient academic knowledge on essay writing.
Nonetheless, there are basic elements of a reflective essay structure, such as, the introduction, the body, and the conclusion.
You must give the general information and overall reflection on your subject in the introduction section. It is arguably the most important part of any paper, not just reflective one. Your reflective essay introduction gives your professor a brief understanding of what the paper is about. It prepares the reader for what comes and shows the questions that are going to be answered in the end.
Coming to the main body, you should explain how you have changed or what life has taught you. Don't forget to explain what made you change. For instance, you might be asked to reflect on how you have improved over the course of the semester or academic year. In such a case, tell us how various assignments and professors have made you stronger.
Lastly, give a solid conclusion. Make it logical and simple to understand. Here you restate the main ideas that you wanted to share with the audience. A good reflective essay conclusion summarizes everything you’ve told during your paper and gives the reader a final impression for the situation you described in the paper reflected on and affected you.
10 Good reflective essay examples
Describe an event, experience, moment, or conversation in time. Give the meaning of the experience.
- A time you lied and attempted to conceal the lie with another one. Were you confronted? What lesson did you learn?
- A trying moment you wanted something that did not belong to you
- A heated argument with your boss, parent or professor
- That moment when you were heartbroken
- The day you were punished unfairly
- Little things you do to make the world a better place
- What is your greatest life challenge?
- A movie, book, or series you never liked before but became a blessing in disguise
- Your favorite shopping place
Suppose you were walking down the streets and almost got hit by a cab. You might want to tell about the near-death moment and how it changed your perceptions about life. In another example, you might be asked by the examiner to write about college life. Don’t simply describe how you got into college, made friends, etc. Since it is an academic piece, you must observe, examine, and explain your personal progress. Note that the main focus is you. Reflect on your deepest emotions as opposed to mere events. Make the paper as individual as you can, allowing the reader to find out your personal qualities. If you ever come across some difficulties in finding exciting ideas on writing, trust your assignment to essays.edubirdie.com.
Have these ideas inspired you? Do you have a topic already? Now that you have become more conscientious go and be proactive in your class. Don’t forget to consult Edubirdie for reliable essay writing help and best essay editing service.