Proposal Title

Experience or Expertise?: Evaluating and Improving Student Critical Reflection

Track

Research Proposal / Learning Theories and Pedagogy

Proposal Abstract

Utilizing data on critical reflection scores, student characteristics, and instructor experience from UNCW’s Quality Enhancement Program, we investigate factors influencing the quality and benefits of student critical reflections. After examining the role of student experiences, faculty training, and other factors, initial analyses suggest that instructor familiarity with implementing critical reflection has a much stronger impact than students’ prior experiences. The interactive presentation format consists of outlining the assessment process, discussing interactively the potential variables correlated to critical reflection, presenting full results (quantitative and qualitative), and guiding participants thru actionable steps to enhance critical reflection practices and benefits at their institutions.

Proposal Description

Self-reflection and critical reflection practices form the cornerstone of experiential projects across disciplines. The benefits are significant and well established, enhancing not only a student’s understanding of what they have learned but also providing them with a greater capacity for critical thinking (Henry et al. 2010). Not every student receives the same benefit from critical reflection, however, and not every reflection shows the depth of critical thought we expect as instructors.

Utilizing data on critical reflection scores, student characteristics, and instructor experience from years of UNCW’s Quality Enhancement Program, we investigate the factors that influence the quality and benefit of critical reflections. Initially we suspected that prior student experience with critical reflection would naturally improve their performance, (e.g., following with past work showing that students receive greater benefits from taking part in multiple high-impact experiences (Kuh, 2008)). Instead, our initial analysis found that the instructor’s familiarity with critical reflection as a pedagogy and their experience utilizing it had a much stronger and more significant impact on the quality and depth of their students’ reflections. Not unsurprisingly, the literature also emphasizes the importance of faculty training in critical reflective skills as a way to increase student reflection quality (Heinrich et al. 2015) as well as improving their overall teaching practices (Ash & Clayton 2005).

Our work focuses then on examining the extent to which student experiences, faculty training, and other factors can influence student critical reflection and by extension the benefits they receive from it. The interactive presentation format consists of outlining the assessment process, discussing interactively the potential variables correlated to critical reflection, presenting full results (quantitative and qualitative), and guiding participants thru actionable steps to enhance critical reflection practices and benefits at their institutions.

Session Format

Presentation Session

Location

Room 4

Publication Type and Release Option

Event

Share

COinS
 
Mar 29th, 11:00 AM Mar 29th, 11:45 AM

Experience or Expertise?: Evaluating and Improving Student Critical Reflection

Room 4

Utilizing data on critical reflection scores, student characteristics, and instructor experience from UNCW’s Quality Enhancement Program, we investigate factors influencing the quality and benefits of student critical reflections. After examining the role of student experiences, faculty training, and other factors, initial analyses suggest that instructor familiarity with implementing critical reflection has a much stronger impact than students’ prior experiences. The interactive presentation format consists of outlining the assessment process, discussing interactively the potential variables correlated to critical reflection, presenting full results (quantitative and qualitative), and guiding participants thru actionable steps to enhance critical reflection practices and benefits at their institutions.