As a key part of the learning process, reflection can be prompted in many ways in the classroom, meetings with students, and informal education settings. Designing experiences that prompt reflection can be a creative process for you and your students. Our framework for reflection may help you with the process.
Prompting students to reflect can support the learning process in many ways. Reflection also augments other approaches to active learning, so educators need not feel that reflection must replace an approach that they have used successfully. Many of the national reports and publications about engineering education have prompted us to consider the most effective ways to improve retention, motivation, and diversity at the undergraduate level. In a National Academies piece calling for curricular change in undergraduate engineering, Ambrose (2013) suggests learning happens with reflection and educators can “provide structured opportunities and time to ensure that continual reflection takes place.” As educators, our aim is to assist students in learning not only the material that we are accountable for teaching them, but also teaching them how to learn on their own as lifelong learners.
As a key part of the learning process, reflection can be prompted with the intentional selection of activities that focus on accountable disciplinary knowledge, identity development, and planning for future learning. Designing experiences that prompt reflection can be a creative process for you as the facilitator. Our framework for reflective activities will guide you in designing learning experiences that achieve your intended goal.