Reflection is an active process that helps health care professional gain a deeper understanding of their experiences (Varghese, 2010).
This essay will discuss about the academic achievements which were obtained during the last semester through a reflective model. The reflective model I have chosen is Gibbs’s model (1988). Gibb’s model of reflection incorporated the following: description, feelings, evaluation, analysis, a conclusion and an action plan (Brooker et al, 2003). The first stage of Gibbs’s model of reflection requires a description of events.
This stage demands the person to put the experience back together and also identify the main process occurring within the experience (Geisler, 2003). During the semester, I was asked to do literature review. At that time I was totally unaware about literature review.
According to Hart (2005) literature review is a process of reading, analyzing, evaluating and summarizing scholarly materials about a specific topic. Since literature review was a new topic for me, initially, I found it very difficult.Additionally, after the first summative feedback I found referencing and academic writing style also was the real matter of concern. The challenges facing international students in today’s academic environments across the secondary, tertiary, graduate and postgraduate levels is growing (Oxbridge researcher, 2010) I am now going to enter the second stage of the Gibbs (1988) model of reflection, which is a discussion about my thoughts and feelings. Before my first submission, I was really confident about my topic and writing skills.
However, after feedback I have become, depressed and lost. Due to the lack of understanding, I was upset with the entire marking system. At the some point I had many doubts about successful completion of course. Students may have negative outlooks about the university life and course, due to low grades which they obtain in their initial stages of the studies (Oxbridge researchers, 2010). Evaluation is the third stage of the Gibbs (1988) model of reflection. In this stage reflector explain what were good and bad experiences about the event (Callara, 2008).
Once I came to know my drawbacks, initially I was in a denial mood. However, gradually I accept my weakness and try to find out a solution to overcome. I started to set goals and be disciplined enough to reach those goals by the deadline.
I kept a small notebook and wrote down each day what I needed to do in each class. I believe the best positive experience of this event being able to organize my time for studies and work. One of my weaknesses was.
I have been afraid to ask for help, as this course progressed, I overcome this issue.I realized in the academic world everyone helps each other. In addition, I have enjoyed this semester because it opened my eyes to who I really as a person. I have become more confident and goal oriented. Stage four of Gibbs (1988) is analysis of the event, where Gibbs encourages the reflector to make sense of the situation (Brooker et al,2003). In the following days after the feedback, I had an opportunity to have one to one section with both public and learning development unit module leaders. They gave some valuable instructions and academic reading exercises to improve my writing style.
Referencing is the most important factor in academic writing (Mason, 2003). My mentor gave a new Harvard referencing format in order to improve my referencing. So that it will help me to improve my grades and also keep myself away from plagiarism accusation. As an international student these sections were a new experience. Moreover during the sections educators were really supportive and encouraging, which helped me to boost up my confidence. Student mentors can be invaluable to students who are struggling with a variety of issue in university campus (Highly, 2010).Furthermore, it also helped me to understand the issues which I was facing in my academic writing.
In addition, before the course I was not given much importance for my writing skills. For instance, my tutors pointed out that my punctuation and expression in writing were below the average. Punctuation marks are a set of symbols with specific rules for the usage of each one. Complete meaning of the sentence depends on the punctuation that is used in the sentence (Scudder, 2009). In conclusion, stage five of the Gibbs (1988) model, through the assignment submission and feed backs.
I have improved my referencing as well as my academic writing skills and also be learned to be more goals oriented and organised. In future there are lot of improvement needed in my academic area. Furthermore, I need to improve my critical thinking skills. I need to organize my writing skills in the more academic way. Within my action plan, I am planning to reduce my part time working hours and concentrate more on studies and also attend regular one to one section with module leaders, so that I can do weekly briefing and improve my skills on a daily basis.To conclude, my reflection skills have developed through the production of this essay.
Using Gibbs model of reflection has helped me to structure my thoughts and feeling appropriately. Furthermore, as a master student I have recognised that reflection is an important learning tool in practice. Referencing Brooker, C. and Nicol, M. (2003) Nursing Adults: Practice Of Caring.
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