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Center for Innovation in Teaching & Research
Member, Texas Tech University System The Princeton Review - 373 Best Colleges, 2011 Edition

Connect Instructional Activities - Reflection

Description: Reflection activities are simple learning experiences that prompt the leaner to examine ideas from a new perspective. Reflection activities encourage broader and more in-depth thought about a topic, and they can promote conceptual breakthroughs by getting learners to integrate separate ideas in new and different ways (Horton, p. 170).

Types of Reflection Activities

  • Rhetorical questions ask thought provoking questions to direct attention to an aspect of the subject.
  • Meditations promote a relaxed, open consideration of the subject.
  • Cite-example activities require the learners to identify real-world instances of a concept or category.
  • Evaluations ask learners to judge the importance or value of an item under study (p. 170).
  • Summary activities require learners to identify and recap important principles, concepts, facts, tips, and other items of learning (p. 171)
    • Best Practices
      • Ask stop-and-think questions
      • Clarify the purpose of the activity
      • Require searching to find examples
      • Specify the type of reflections sought by showing a few examples as a model
      • Encourage personal examples
      • Set a context for the evaluation
      • Require criteria. Have learners state the criteria they used to judge the idea.
      • Require precision (pp. 172-181).
    Suggestion: Blogs are a great tool for students to post and log private reflections. Permission settings can be modified to allow only the instructor and/or classmates to access, read, and comment. For more information on how to set up a free blog, refer to Section Three: Online Learning Tools/Blogs.