Transitions in reflective practice: exploring student development and preferred methods of engagement

O'Reilly, Sharleen L. and Milner, Julia 2015, Transitions in reflective practice: exploring student development and preferred methods of engagement, Nutrition & dietetics, vol. 72, no. 2, pp. 150-155, doi: 10.1111/1747-0080.12134.

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Title Transitions in reflective practice: exploring student development and preferred methods of engagement
Author(s) O'Reilly, Sharleen L.ORCID iD for O'Reilly, Sharleen L.
Milner, Julia
Journal name Nutrition & dietetics
Volume number 72
Issue number 2
Start page 150
End page 155
Total pages 6
Publisher Wiley
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2015-06
ISSN 1446-6368
Keyword(s) Adult learning
Professional identity transition
Reflective practice
Summary Aim: Health-care professional students are required to demonstrate their reflective practice skills during their degree training programme. Online and digital technologies are increasingly being used to support this skill development. Our study aimed to explore whether different technology-based methods supported student growth and skill development in reflective practice at separate developmental time points (novice and competent). Methods: Third- (n = 23) and fourth-year undergraduate dietetic students (n = 22) from a single university were cross-sectionally surveyed via an online anonymous questionnaire at the end of the academic year. The mixed methods survey of 37 questions investigated the student experience of different reflective practice activities, their effect on a student's ability to self-reflect and whether using them aided a student's perceived transition towards becoming a competent dietitian. The data analysis included brief thematic enquiry, descriptive and independent t-test statistical examination. Results: Differences emerged in the way students engaged in reflection over time. Fourth-year students preferred to use more independent methods such as e-journaling (fourth- vs third-year students, P = 0.003) and engaged in reflection for reasons outside assessment (fourth- vs third-years, P = 0.027). Fourth-year students also identified fewer negative barriers to participating in reflection and reported being comfortable engaging in reflective practice. Conclusions: Overall, offering students a range of ways to engage in reflective practice over time supported their understanding and increased confidence in their reflective practice skills, thus potentially enabling a smoother transition into their profession where reflective practice is an essential and autonomous skill. © 2014 Dietitians Association of Australia.
Language eng
DOI 10.1111/1747-0080.12134
Field of Research 130209 Medicine, Nursing and Health Curriculum and Pedagogy
Socio Economic Objective 930103 Learner Development
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2014, Wiley-Blackwell
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
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