By: C. Schulter
One of the many aims of our student lives is to become lifelong learners, to be dedicated, disciplined, and focused. Although every individual learns in a specific way, the reflective learning method can be applied in most studying strategies and in life in general.
The reflective learning method was first explored in the educational field by John Dewey, American philosopher, and pedagogue. Dewey, in his writings always emphasized how important it was to include reflection on the learning process, he once said “We do not learn from experience. We learn from reflecting on experience.” – J. Dewey (1933). In Dewey’s theory of reflective learning, meaning and relevance could only be added to an experience after reflecting on it, which later would lead to growth and change.
Reflective Learning method could be summarized into 5 steps:
As mentioned before, reflective learning is not exclusive for the educational field, and can be used in our everyday life. Reflective learning is crucial to becoming a lifelong learner. Life are compiled experiences that are different to everyone. If reflecting on experiences was a habit, we would all learn something new every day.
Being a lifelong learner is a decision we must make every day. René Descartes, known as the philosopher of self-reflection, said “Cogito ergo sum” which translates to “I think, therefore I am”. A relevant reflection on how thinking and reflecting leads to a stronger sense of self.
With self-reflection, we understand who we are, how we learn and what we can learn with life. May we all reflect, add meaning and relevance to the moments we go through, to allow growth and change to take place.