Reflective Journaling

Reflective Journaling Chelsea Huntington, RDH, BS, MSDH Student University of Bridgeport Fones School of Dental Hygiene


Reflective Journaling. Chelsea Huntington, RDH, BS, MSDH Student University of Bridgeport Fones School of Dental Hygiene. What is Reflective Journaling?. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Page 1: Reflective Journaling

Reflective JournalingChelsea Huntington, RDH, BS, MSDH Student

University of Bridgeport

Fones School of Dental Hygiene

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What is Reflective Journaling?

• A reflective journal is a progressively growing document that you write, to record the progress of your learning experiences. This document is a place to express your reflections and thoughts on what you’re learning and how it impacts your beliefs, experience and others.GOAL: Encourage students to think about past experiences, current situations, and expected outcomes of their actions.

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Metacognitive reflections

Focus on:• The awareness of one’s learning

experience.• The evaluation of the experience.• The regulation of one’s attitude and

behaviour for better performance and a more productive experience.

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A reflective journal is not...

• A summary of the course material or a list of actions. It should focus more on your reactions to what you've experienced, and what you've been learning.

• A learning log. On a learning log you might write down the times and days when you did something and what you did. A log is a record of events, but a journal is a record of your reflections and thoughts about those events.

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Who Benefits from a Reflective Journal?

• You, the learner. Keeping a record of what you learn is an incentive to keep pushing ahead

• By telling yourself what you've learned, you can track the progress you've made.

• You also begin to notice the gaps in your knowledge and skills as you look back on different journals and experiences.

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Why Reflective Journaling?

• Journaling gives students the opportunity to make small entries on a regular basis of what occurred, in order to assist them in an overall reflection of their learning experience.

• Its best to include documentation of the

critical events of your field study experience. Also record your responses, thoughts, and feelings about those events.

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Reflective Journaling and Service Learning

• As a part of your service-learning experience, you are expected to maintain a reflective journal. This journal is a log of your experiences while performing your community service.

• The journal will also provide you with a

place to record activities that tie into your learning experiences.

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Steps in Journaling While Service Learning

• Before Service• reflect alone- create a statement of goals.• reflect with classmates- explore hopes and fears, discuss expert views.• reflect with community partners- create needs assessment or statement.

• During Service• reflect alone- create reflective journals• reflect with classmates- discuss critical incidents in journal• reflect with community partners –review lessons learned during site


• After Service• reflect alone- review course papers, projects or creative activity• reflect with classmates- through team presentation or projects• reflect with community partner- via presentations to community


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What Should be Included in a Journal?

• What happened?

• What should I have done differently?

• What did I do?

• What would I need to do next time?

• How did I do it?

• Why did I do it?

• What specific areas do I need to improve or extend?

• How did I feel? Why?

• Which aspects were successful? Unsuccessful?

• What do I want to investigate further?

• What did I learn?

• How does this relate to previous knowledge and experience?

• What does it mean?

• What did I like or not like about this experience?


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How should I write?• Write in first person, as if you are writing a letter to a

friend• There is no right or wrong answer for a journal entry. • Therefore, feel free to express your ideas, opinion, and

thoughts and don’t hesitate to share your personal experience if that helps to illustrate your point.

• Content is more important than grammar. It’s okay to make minor grammatical mistakes if that does not interfere with your transmission of ideas. Spend the majority of your time writing focusing on expressing thoughts and ideas while trying to maintain acceptable grammar as well.

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Criteria Exemplary Proficient Incomplete Points PossiblePoint Values 3 2 1 3

Content- Reflective Journaling and Development of Ideas

Well-developed; shows evidence of strong reflective thought and/or metacognition pertaining to personal perspective and professional development; new ideas introduced and reflects a good grasp of concepts presented.

Shows some evidence of reflection and personal perspective, but not well developed; few new ideas introduced but reflects a grasp of concepts presented.


Evidence of Critical Thinking

? ?Student shows minor or incorrect application of concepts and critical thinking ability. Student makes no connection between practicum experiences and the role of a dental hygienist.


Writing Mechanics and Timeliness

Well written, clear organization, uses standard English grammar, contains minor, if any, spelling errors. All ideas, concepts and thoughts are easily conveyed to the reader. Submitted by deadline.

Demonstrates some evidence of proper organization and has a few grammatical errors. Key concepts and ideas can still be conveyed to the reader. Submitted by deadline.


Total Points Possible


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Practice Activity(20 minutes)

Journal about an event such as, a celebration, tragedy, victory, defeat, or a time you helped in your community.

The journal entry should portray your evolving feelings, emotions, and reactions to the event.

Conclude the reflection by summarizing how this event has impacted you and others.

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References• Drinka, T.J.K and Clark, P.G. (2000). Health care teamwork:

Interdisciplinary practice and teaching. Westport, CT: Auburn House.• Plack, Margaret M.; Driscoll, Maryanne; Blissett, Sylvene; (2005). A

Method for Assessing Reflective Journaling; Journal of Allied Health; Volume 34, Number 4, pp. 199-208.

• Kessler, Penny; Lund, Carole H; (2004). Reflective Journaling: Developing an Online Journal for Distance Education. Nurse Educator; Volume 29 - Issue 1 - pp 20-24.

• Lasater, K., Nielson, A. (2009). Reflective Journaling for Clinical Judgment Development and Evaluation. J Nurse Educ. Jan; 48(1): 40-4. Oregon Health and Science University, School of Nursing, Portland, Oregon.

• Karran Thorpe. (2004). Reflective Learning Journals: From Concept to Practice. Reflective Practice, Vol. 5, No. 3, The University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada.