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Models for structuring reflection


Using models for reflection

There are a number of models for structuring your reflection. Some can be applied more generally, while others have been designed for specific situations, such as Johns (2000) in nursing. These models often have three common elements:

  • Description
  • Analysis
  • Action ('so what' or 'reflexivity') element

The models can provide you with frameworks for asking questions; they can also prompt you to think more deeply about the whole process of reflection and becoming a reflective practitioner. However, the process of reflection remains a personal one; only you can decide what works for your own reflective practice.

"…within a reflective perspective, such structures as the MSR [model for structured reflection] are merely devices to help you reflect rather than impose a prescription of what reflection is"

(Johns, 2000, p. 48).

This section introduces you to five of the models which can help with structuring your reflection. Other models are covered in the list of further resources.

For more ideas about using the models, see our section on Reflection scenarios.

Podcast: Reflection (with Vivienne Griggs) Part 2

Duration: 8 minutes

Michael Shields talks to Vivienne Griggs, Senior Lecturer in Human Resource Management and Organisational Behaviour, about different models of reflection.