“To my mind, the character of Thor from “Thor: The Movie” reflects my personality. He is brave and honest compared to his greedy and selfish brother, so I adore the God of Thunder most of all!”
It is an extract from a reflective essay of an 8th-grade schoolboy. More complex reflective essay examples are available. In this article, students who wish to learn how to highlight their personality will discover effective writing tips and top reflective essay topics.
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A reflection essay seems easy as you don’t have to defend one’s point of view or convince the reader of something. It has its challenges, so we recommend finding quick online help with academic assignments in the shape of professional writers & editors!
What Is a Reflective Essay Assignment?
A good question to start with is, “What is a reflective essay?” A reflective essay is a type of academic writing, in which the student has to test personal life experience/position towards a particular topic. Unlike in argumentative writing, the student does not have to defend the personal position. It does not require a complicated, professional language with some terminology. Do not define something - focus on sharing personal life experience, skills, development, and the most vivid examples to illustrate the topic.
The format of this essay depends on the target audience. A reflection essay student writes to meet the college writing standards has a different structure from the one a magazine writer should preset to reach the issue’s audience. Each reflective paper has a similar outline.
How to Write a Reflective Essay: Critical Elements
Personal writing helps students to stress their individuality by highlighting various skills, knowledge, behavior, feelings, and even mood. A reflective essay shows how the person changed over time and what factors played an important role in those metamorphoses.
Keep on reading this section to learn how to write different parts of the paper about yourself.
Preparing Reflective Essay Outline
The first thing every student needs to understand how to write a reflective essay is an effective, detailed outline. It has 3 typical sections:
- Body Paragraphs
The assignment of this type does not require any references – the only person to refer is the student who decides to share his thoughts & ideas.
Find 3 main reasons to include an outline of this type of writing!
- An outline assists in laying out the details the student wants to leave after narrowing down the draft before working on the final paper. It prevents from concluding the essay by realizing something is missing.
- An outline provides a clear, concise roadmap, which prevents the writer from taking curvy paths and facing dead ends. It shows the way like a compass in the woods.
- An outline helps to save a plenty of time.
- An outline helps the potential readers, including teachers & classmates, to avoid falling off the main point when reading the essay partially.
Things to Discuss in Introduction to Reflective Essay!
Start with stating the primary focus of the personal reflection. Avoid being indirect and covering a range of topics; stay direct and concise by underlining the basic purpose of sharing a life experience.
“Giving a preview of the most exciting part of the story is a clue. The target reader may lack time to read the full piece from cover to cover. “There are many things I have learned from Marketing class. The most valuable lesson I have obtained is checking the effectiveness of 2 different approaches or services through utilizing a so-called A/B testing.” It will make the reader think what is special about this specific method. The reader will go on reading the body paragraphs to find out!”
Professor Hemsworth, History & Anthropology teacher and academic writer at NerdyMates
Another way to attract attention in the introductory paragraph is to come up with the intriguing hook sentence like statistics, fact, quote, metaphor, rhetorical question, or joke. It depends on the mood of the reflective essay.
Working on Reflective Essay Thesis
Some people may say that a reflective essay does not need a thesis. However, the example shared in the previous section talking about introduction is an example of the inspiring thesis statement. Include at least a summary of the primary idea. The best idea would be to focus on previewing the peak of the plot development or highlighting the most valuable lesson learned.
“Now I realize the value of sports in the life of every student. The swimming courses I visit since 13 are the great example of the way to support positive thinking and healthy body.”
How to Write a Conclusion for a Reflective Essay?
The body paragraphs interpret the way the author evolved or what he/she has absorbed from a particular life lesson (mention 3 different lessons). The student should mention the circumstances that forced him to pass a certain way. If you study a subject like English Literature or Arts, the paper’s prompt may ask you to describe how you changed as a field professional during the course of study. It is important to choose a specific interval of time to list the improvements. Compare & contrast the initial skills to the knowledge you have today. It is a great idea to tell the audience the ways various tasks, challenges, and lessons made the author grow since the beginning of his education.
Check this awesome example of a reflective essay:
There is no need to conduct research to collect the supporting evidence. The author alone is responsible for defending every stated claim with the help of vivid examples that describe the topic the best. Example: In case the student has become more professional in the field of writing, he should list the causes of those changes (new English teacher, more practice at home, part-time job related to the field of writing). Who knows – some of the ideas may be used by other students to succeed!
The last challenge is to prepare an impressive, inspiring, and powerful conclusion, which will make the target readers want to develop the same positive way! Write a conclusion regarding the way you have changed over a given period of time. Share some forecast by looking ahead: how the experiences listed in the essay would influence further personal development. By looking at the past events, decide which of them was the most important. The good idea is to compare & contrast past and future events to stress the gaps between the obtained skills and experience, possibly gained in the future.
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30 Exciting Reflective Essay Topics to Explore Yourself!
It is time to cover the list of reflective essay topics. The top students and their college professors recommend personalized, interesting ideas that could give a hint to other adolescents.
Good Reflective Essay Topics
- Personal trait the author likes most about himself
- The greatest phobia the student has faced
- The ways to overcome adversity
- The methods to do homework fast
- The biggest strength of the author
- Student’s greatest achievement to date
- Most vivid holiday memory
- Lessons learned from the first official date
- Describing the situation, in which the student faced a complex moral dilemma
- Discussing the biggest ethical issue in life
Personal Reflective Essay Ideas
- Surviving blindness of the example of close friend
- Staying alone for the first time in a life
- Sharing room on campus with another student
- Living under one roof with parents
- Previous summer job experience (ice-cream seller, waiter, etc.)
- What was the best winter location to celebrate Christmas?
- Who does the student admire out of the female celebrities?
- What kind of relationships does the author have with his/her mom?
- Traits to look for when choosing a partner
- The most helpful thing an old man told me
Reflective Essay on English Class
- The most hurtful thing the student heard in his life
- Describing the period of deep, personal depression
- Things that make the author laugh
- Discussing the loudest & most exciting gig
- Attending guitar lessons
- Launching personal small business
- The process of studying foreign languages
- The impact of technology on the personal development
- The tastiest food based on personal investigation
- Favorite book/movie/author/band (do not confuse such type of reflective essay with the movie review)
Reflective Essay Examples from Successful College Students
No recommendations, tips & tricks help the students to understand the way a particular assignment should look like in the end as effectively as the examples. The article contains one of the up-to-date reflective essay examples from a college student.
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The person explains personal progress with the help of Facebook experience. It may sound a bit commercial. The writer has a right to promote what he likes in the reflective essay. Do not forget to combine the description of the tools that helped you to develop with the personal experience & real-life examples.
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The Whole Perspective
Each course that I sign up for is enrolled in with the intent that it will contribute to my life in some way.Whether that contribution is in the form of knowledge toward my major and future career, or a sense of personal enlightenment, each class makes its mark on my path of higher education.The University Studies course, “Cyber Millennium”, exemplified this idea by teaching me about how I function as a student in an age of rapidly advancing technology.
Before I took this course, I considered myself to be a more traditional learner; someone who learned best through classic methods of lecture and study.I felt that I was able to learn more from professors and lecturers who were qualified in the subject material.I preferred to listen and to take notes while the professor conveyed information to me that I would later review and utilize in some paper or assignment that I would work on later in the confines of my room.I never really felt the need to participate in class by prompting questions or providing input on the material.I was never too fond of group activities because I assumed that there was nothing I could learn from my class mated that I couldn’t learn from the professor.
The University Studies course has redefined my views on learning and has made apparent to me the vast amounts of learning opportunities that extend beyond the teacher student relationship.Over the course of this term, I encountered situations where I was made to work with different groups of people.I heard other people’s opinions and gave my own.Working in these groups has taught me that there are a great many valuable things that I can learn from my classmates that I could not learn from the teacher.Working with a collective mind helped me to see ideas that would have never crossed my mind had I been working on the assignment alone.I understand now the importance of learning from others and how well I feel I am able to contribute.Having the eyes of many people from different backgrounds and mentalities can shed a whole new light on a project.Everyone has a different perspective to share.Sometimes to see the world as a whole, one needs the view from every angle.
The course helped me to grow as a learner by implementing activities such as group projects and debates that required me to interact and voice my opinion.The course centers on a strong group mentality which is integrated into the assignments.I have been in debate groups that require all of the members to meet and discuss the best strategy for arguing our point.Activities like this allow everyone to contribute their opinion and play a part in the success of the group.Quite often the lectures are guided by the input that the class provides.This creates an environment where I feel comfortable to share my opinion and take an interest in hearing the opinion of others.The students feel like a part of the course rather than bodies at attention.All of these things have helped me to understand that knowledge is more than just the books and the notes; it’s the people around me.
The structure of the class and how it was instructed allowed me to experience many new ways of interacting as a student, but the subject matter covered in the course opened up my mind to the many issues and conflicts that surround me as student in an age of technology.Having grown up in a time where technology, computers, and the internet are tightly woven into my daily life, it becomes difficult to see the way that these new things impact the word and the effects that they are having on society because I have never known any other world outside of the technology filled one that we experience today.
Before taking this course there were many things in this are that I had never considered before.I had never thought about the dangers and complications that technology can have when implemented in areas such as voting and human enhancement.Every day, as a student, countless pieces of technology in all shapes and forms pass through my hands as I am constantly bombarded with information from all over the word on my laptop, my phone, even my watch.The Cyborg Millennium course has served as a mental pause from this bombardment; a chance to step back and analyze the technology and the information that is looming over my shoulder at all times.
I have learned that, in spite of the abundant benefits of new technology, there are many potential problems that can too often go overlooked.Technology has the potential to become more a part of our lives than we are.Humans can lose themselves in the technology that surrounds them every day. Being a student in a world where everyone is constantly plugged in to some piece of technology can be distracting and overwhelming at times.Life seems to move at a faster pace with each year that passes, and this can be a daunting presence in a student’s life.
The University Studies course has provided the atmosphere in which to assess these looming problems, to learn how to confront them and, with the proper knowledge and awareness, to find a balance.In this course I have studied and research the essence of what it means to be human and how technology has affected that concept.Through movies, essays, and books, I have learned of the many dangers of technology.Though the depictions on most of the books and movies were rather extreme or apocalyptic, they all seemed to be making the same assertion; technology will either consume humanity or become humanity.In my portfolio I have included several essays that I have written on this topic because I find it to be a particularly important one.The lesson that I have taken away from this course in respects to that subject is that the future is world encased in the technology that we are creating every day, and is such a new world it will be important to retain the ethical and moral compass that defines our best human characteristics today.Many of the papers that I have written and included in the portfolio elaborate on this idea.
The goals of this course highlight ethical responsibility and the ability to communicate with and understand other people and their diverse experiences.Having taken this course I feel that the best way to understand these concepts about humanity is by understanding what is not human, what threatens humans, the things in the world that could deprive us of our individuality and humility.By learning to appreciate and understand the diversity of humanity I have learned to cherish what makes us humans, and see that there is a world apart from the humming technology that floods every house, office, and classroom in America.That world is the world of human experience.What we experience as human beings and how we interact with one another is what will lead us to retain the ethical guidelines as we approach a future where such concepts will be hard to define.
Throughout the year that I have taken this course, I have come to recognize these concepts and the importance that they have in our society.I feel as though I have become a better student, a student more able to function in college and in life, because I have taken time to understand the world of technology around me, and how it affects everything that I do in my life.Having the opportunity to interact with my peers and discuss the subject matter with them, both in class and in mentor session, has helped me to better communicate my own experiences as a student and as a computer science major.Since my major directly pertain to the material discussed in the class, I found it very enlightening to hear all of the other students discuss their views on technology in society and the experiences that they have had with it.
There is one particular assignment that I remember from the course that really sums up the teachings in this course.The assignment was for every student to write a brief essay about the first interaction that they ever had with technology and how it impacted them.I wrote about my father and the first time that he took me to the Museum.I remember the overwhelming intrigue and fascination with almost magical instruments that surrounded me.Each student shared their essay in class and I was able to hear others’ stories and memories.What I found interesting about the assignment was that every student in the class had begun to experience technology in their lives at around the same time, when we were all very young.It struck me that my generation truly is the first generation of technology.No generation before ours has been born and raised in the birth and advancement of modern technology.
As a generation that shares such a unique time frame of growth, it will be our task to decide how humanity and technology evolve together in the future.The goals of the University Studies course have embraced all of the tools necessary to help me succeed in a world of technology.Technology can bring the world together in so many ways, but can also provide everyone with their own world of isolation behind computer screens and iPod headphones.This course has allowed me to open up and communicate with others.These opportunities are important in order to gather and generate the skills that are necessary to succeed in the real world.I have learned that in a world of technology, success is found in one’s ability to communicate without it.