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Reflective writing in Education

Thinking reflectively helps you:

  • understand the concept of reflective writing
  • recognise the benefits of reflecting on your developing teaching philosophy
  • distinguish features of reflective writing.

Reflective writing occurs in:

  • reading logs
  • thinking logs
  • journals.

There is no right and wrong in reflective writing; however, it is important to show you can link the theories presented throughout your course and your practical placement experience to your own understandings.

Reading logs

Reading logs help you reflect on class readings or other relevant texts that interest you. They are a brief summary of the main ideas presented and related to your personal stance. In this way you actively link the text with your own ideas at a particular point of time. Reading logs help you maintain a record of the main ideas and key quotations that can be used again later.

Thinking logs

A thinking log is like a personal journal. Sometimes you need to reflect on a series of selected readings or a set of your own. Thinking logs help you think through new theories, reflect on teaching techniques or incidents that occur in a school and to unravel the meaning. Your viewpoint is important as you are the link between theory and practice.


Journals are another way to record your emerging philosophies throughout your course. They help you focus your thoughts while you read or critically reflect, and can help your lecturer understand how you are coming to terms with new ideas. Your journal will show how your teaching philosophy develops.

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