Reflective practice

An education resource to help improve your professional practice and working relationships to achieve better outcomes for you and your clients.

The following collection of activities will support you to think about:

  • the assumptions you make about reflective practice
  • how reflective practice can be used to improve outcomes for you and your clients
  • what techniques and tools to use and when
  • what forms of reflection improve your practice and how to measure this.

This section contains five activities, these being:

Assumptions about reflective practice


To introduce you to some statements about reflective practice and challenge your assumptions. To support you to examine reflective practice further.

Individual action
  1. Print the Assumption challenge activity sheet
  2. Put a mark along the continuum that most represents your view and consider the questions on the sheet.
Group action

This activity can be done by a group with a facilitator. The manager/coordinator may want to nominate a facilitator to manage this activity.

Rather than a paper-based activity, this activity could be run as a Corners activity.

  1. Print  Four large signs
  2. Place one sign in each corner of the room
  3. Use overhead screens to display each statement about reflective practice
  4. Ask participants to move to the corner that most reflects their view. Those who are undecided go to the middle of the room.
  5. Participants put forward their view in their small groups and then to the whole group
  6. Participants are given an opportunity to shift their position after listening to other participants’ views
  7. The facilitator throughout the activity can draw out points of similarity and difference.

A spotlight on reflective practice


A simple overview of reflective practice

Individual action
  1. Print  A spotlight on reflective practice information sheet
  2. Read the information sheet and consider the questions.
Group action

Distribute the information sheet to staff to read prior to attending the workshop/ discussion group.

A spotlight on reflective practice information sheet

Ask each staff member to consider and answer the following questions before coming to the workshop. Consider questions

Use these questions to lead the group discussion.

A learning journal


Learn how learning journals can help you be more reflective in your practice.

Individual action
  1. Print  Exploring a learning journal information sheet
  2. Take a moment to consider the following questions:
    • How do I record what I learn through my practice currently?
    • Why might I use a learning journal?
    • Why might I not use a learning journal?
    • What would my learning journal look like? How would I use it?

A critical incident reflection framework


To consider the use of a critical incident reflection framework.

Individual action
  1. Print Critical reflection framework information sheet
  2. Take a moment to consider the following questions.
    • How does the underpinning concept of critical incident reflection compare to my understanding and practice of it currently?
    • Why might I use critical incident reflection at work?
    • Why might I not use critical incident reflection at work?
    • Would there be a space and place for this form of critical incident reflection in my practice? If so, how could it be used and for what purpose?

Collaborative action learning groups


To consider your engagement in collaborative action learning.

To reflect on particular skills, such as listening, questioning, and debate and dialogue, in group approaches to learning.

Individual action
  1. Print Collaborative action learning group information sheet
  2. Take a moment to consider these questions on the sheet.

Print version

To download a full version of the reflective practice resource, see Maternal and Child Health nurse reflective practice.