08 March 2011

On proper reflection

The link is to a post in Sean's reflective journal, and I'm linking to it in answer to the occasional request for examples of good reflection.

 Why do I rate it so highly?
  • Because it is task-focussed. It is about teaching and doing it better and getting better results.
  • Because it is not about blaming anyone (so much so-called "reflection") is.
  • Because it shows careful planning of practice based on previous experience and (of course) reflection.
  • Because it entertains several potential explanations for changes, and lives with the complexity and uncertainty they entail.
  • And it sets up hypotheses for testing.
On Saturday I attended an excellent lecture by Kathryn Ecclestone, on the rise of "therapeutic education" (quick introductory article here, and Amazon.co.uk book link here) in which, among other things, she explored the extent to which "reflective practice"--and especially writing about it--has morphed into highly individualised and feeling-focussed introspection, rather than being about doing the job. This sample helps to reclaim some of that ground.

(And here is my own critique of reflection as often practised.)

[Disclosure; this is in danger of becoming incestuous, because this blog also appears on Sean's blog list, and I've commented briefly over there.]


  1. Anonymous3:22 pm

    Thanks for the encouragement, James. I'd have paid to see Kathryn Ecclestone myself. There seems to be a certain amount of sense coming out of Birmingham, Stephen Gorard is there too...

  2. Incestuous or a new kind of coffee house?



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