Your assignment is a critical reflection on learning experience from placement. It is a level 6 assignment.
For your essay to be reflective it needs to be structured around a reflective model of your choice. You do however have to acknowledge your rationale for your choice.
It would be expected in the main body of the essay that a typical reference should not be used more than twice. If you need it more that should lead to finding another reference that supports your discussions. This, in turn, will add to the breadth of your critical writing.
You may find define, describe, apply usefully. It is a simple format that allows you to write academic essays well. For example: “caring”
In your essay, you would write your definition of caring and add a reference to where you read about caring. Then you would describe why nurses need to care and provide a second different reference about this. Thirdly you could describe how you cared for a patient (apply) and add a third reference may be from a nursing journal (about caring for a patient with…)
The presentation of the reference list will also reflect your academic credibility. All references in the essay must be in the list and vice versa. References should be in alphabetical order and follow the Harvard style. Your reference list should not be a list of web sources but journal articles, documents and books etc.
A simple example of essay structure could be:
In this essay, I will be writing a critical reflective account detailing the importance of continuing education in practice and my role and responsibilities for promoting it in my career. I will be using Gibb’s (reference) reflective cycle as the structure for my essay and will be giving examples from practice. In line with the NMC Code (reference) and the names of hospitals will remain anonymous.
Reflective practice is… define + reference. Reflective practice is used in nursing because….. describe + reference. In my field of nursing, I have used reflective practice…… apply + reference. During my last placement, I learnt how to change a tracheostomy tube.
Feelings. During my last placement, I cared for a patient with a tracheostomy and with my mentor, we decided it would be a suitable learning opportunity for me. During the first tube change, I watched but felt excited about the prospect of changing the tube myself. (a reference to what they felt.) The next day I got to be involved in removing the tube which again felt very exciting. However, as the time came to change the tube I suddenly became very nervous. I had to do ….. to calm myself down and remain professional as I did not want the patient to see how nervous I was. Reference. During the learning experience, I did…… describe and reference.
Evaluation. Describe what went well and what could have gone better. References appropriate for themes in paragraph
Analysis. Describe what else you or your mentor made of the learning experience. References appropriate for themes in paragraph
Conclusion. Looking back, during the learning experience I could have also done….. as it would have… reference
Action plan. If I was to encounter a similar patient requiring a tracheostomy tube change in the future I would now do ………. Because I have learnt…….. reference
In this essay I have critically reflected on continuing education in practice, changing a tracheostomy tube. I have used a variety of reference to back up and inform my discussions and learning…….