I started to use reflection in my first year as an OT student. I witnessed an incident on placement and I did not know how to cope with the traumatic event.
I used supervision with my educator and she helped me use a reflective model.
The model she taught me was using Gibbs Model of Reflection as it enabled me to learn from concrete experiences and puts the situations in a more clearer context.
I was able to follow this structure and it apparently helped me with having clarity in my thinking process.
I used reflection all the way through my three years to the present day working as an OT.
I had lectures at university on reflection, but putting this into practice I felt much appreciation for reflecting. It has since enabled me to become a reflective learner and a more skilful practitioner as I now know how to reflect automatically.
I used reflection for numerous reasons. I used reflection for the sole purpose of:
- University - Learning in groups and how to improve my group work skills.
- Placement - Using reflection to learn from critical incidences that questioned my own moral views. Also I used supervision to have informal reflection with my educator. I also used supervision to reflect on positive experiences of being on placement. On placement I kept a reflective log. You can use reflection to reflect on your day, week, or when you have experienced something positive or negative.
- Supervision - I used supervision to reflect on my skills and concerns. Reflecting I found was helpful as it put many aspects of my worries into context and enabled me to think more logically.
When I was at university, my learning style was a reflector and pragmatist, which meant I stood back from discussions and contributed to discussions after I thought about ideas; and weighed up debates to arrive at my own conclusions.
Being a pragmatist helped me think creatively, but also frustrated me with people talking irrelevant to the topics at hand.
Taking part in group presentations were exiting for many reasons:
- It helps form friendships.
- Everybody has different levels of experience.
- Everybody works part of a team so skills in teamwork are developed.
- You achieve an overall group grade, but don't fall into the trap of doing all the work and carrying other people in your group as it will creative a hostile partnership.
- Group presentations I took part included: analysing an assessment e.g. AMPS or MOHOST; Health promotion; analysing an activity, taking part in inter-professional learning exercises and writing group essays together.
Challenging parts of group work
In my reflections, I found it a challenge working with people who did not care. I felt other people in groups were pulling them along and it wasn’t fair.
I found working in bigger groups challenging as there was no leadership.
What did I like about group work?
I loved being in small groups, I formed great relationships with new people, especially when you work with them for so long on projects. There are always highs and lows with working in groups, I developed:
- Good friendships
- Negotiation and delegation skills
- Reflective skills
- Inter personal skills
- Listening, reflecting, verbal and non verbal skills.
I will be writing an article on group work with more experiences of working in groups with patients and with MDT members.