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Encouraging reflective practice in periods of professional workplace experience: the development of a conceptual model

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It is common in many professional subject areas for students to undertake periods of work-based experience as part of their studies. Research suggests that by reflecting on their experience, student learning can be enhanced. As a result it is common for students to produce reflective diaries, journals, logs or e-portfolios during their placements. The paper reviews literature on reflective practice and relates it to the findings of a number of small-scale studies investigating students' perceptions of recording and reflecting in the built environment professions, principally architecture and construction management. The findings suggest that the levels of reflection that students achieve are likely to be influenced by their individual propensity and willingness to reflect, the focus of reflection that students perceive they need to adopt, and the structure and support students are provided with to help them reflect. The paper concludes by proposing a hypothetical model that relates these issues.

Keywords: e-portfolios; reflective practice; work based learning

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Welsh School of Architecture, Cardiff University, Higher Education Academy, Centre for Education in the Built Environment, Cardiff, UK

Publication date: 2009-11-01

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