“Thinking back on what we have done in order to discover how our knowing in action my have contributed to an unexpected outcome.
We may do so after the fact, in tranquility or we may pause in the midst of action (stop & think).”
(Schon 1987, cited in Bulman & Schutz, 2004, p.2).
The Thinking Process (adapted from Mezirow 1990, Schon 1987, Brookfield 1987)
Engaging in reflective writing will develop your understanding in many ways, including helping you to:
The following cues are offered to help practitioners to access, make sense of, and learn through experience.
Write a description of the experience What are the key issues within this description that I need to pay attention to?
What was I trying to achieve? Why did I act as I did? What are the consequences of my actions?
• For the patient and family
• For myself
• For people I work with
How did I feel about this experience when it was happening?
How did the patient feel about it? How do I know how the patient felt about it?
What internal factors influenced my decision-making and actions?
What external factors influenced my decision-making and actions?
What sources of knowledge did or should have influenced my decision making and actions?
Could I have dealt better with the situation?
What other choices did I have?
What would be the consequences of these other choices?
How can I make sense of this experience in light of past experience and future practice?
How do I NOW feel about this experience?
Have I taken effective action to support myself and others as a result of this experience?
How has this experience changed my way of knowing in practice?
Johns, C. (1994). Nuances of reflection. Journal of Clinical Nursing 3 71-75
Gibbs, G. (1988) Learning by Doing: A guide to teaching and learning methods. Further Education Unit, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford.