How To Write A Reflective Essay

A reflective essay is a form of composition developed to evaluate and examine an individual’s experience obtained while studying a particular subject or working on a particular project. Moreover, it reveals progress and personal traits of the applicant. However, the aim of a reflective essay is not just to describe the process under development, but to set personal future goals. Let the target audience know your reasons for applying for a certain position or entering a particular educational institution. Your desire may be strong enough, but the commission has to see whether you possess some value-added skills to manage an overall performance.

Each claim in the reflection essay has to be supported by a persuasive example from the author’s life experience. It may be the case based on education, career, special events, valuable person in the author’s life, his favorite book, etc. The main requirement is to make the paper sound as personal as possible. It’s one of the essays to be written in the first person singular.

Very often reflective essays are written as the additions to an academic portfolio or even instead of a resume/CV or cover letter. It depends on the area of implementation, goals of the essay and the author’s specialization. If a reflection essay is accomplished as a part of a writing portfolio, it is used to highlight development of a student, so individual strengths and weaknesses have to be described in details. Reflective essay then serves as a tool with the help of which the weak points of the writer can be discovered and improved. Despite the fact you may deviate from the topic a bit, in any case you have to show awareness of the subject. When the issue at hand seems too much general, try to narrow it by stressing only those moments you believe are valuable. Note that a focus on creativity doesn’t have to take precedence over the fundamental task of informing your reader on how you have grown at a certain field recently.

The structure of a reflective essay usually follows the structure of any other essay type step-by-step. However, in some situations thesis statement may be skipped. It is possible only if the writer is trying to argue a claim, position or perspective through a personal reflection. The most popular reference formats are MLA, APA and Chicago.

Mistakenly, applicants often implement various slang words and phrases thinking that a personal reflective essay means an absolute freedom and complete reflection of the author’s individuality. However, there is no way to break all the rules and ignore the general frames. Avoid using slang words like “doozy”, “cool”, “zonked”, because you won’t be taken seriously! Forget about popular Internet shortcuts like “LOL” or “OMG” (and other social networking inventions like “facepalm” or “meme”). Any author has to keep in mind that he deals with people of the elderly generation and with people of academic professions who are accustomed to using only the official language. Different language innovations may sound fun and more understandable to the younger generation, but they annoy others. The only case when you can input a few slang words or Internet phrases is when the person responsible for checking your paper is quite young and stays in tunes with modern speech peculiarities.

Whenever you decide there is left a lot to be desired, you can search for special academic writing services. You can always rely on certified experts who hold a wagon of writing experience. All of the client’s desires and expectations are taken into account before writing a reflective essay, so don’t worry about quality. After all, such services guarantee “just-in-time” delivery and satisfying results.

Does a Reflective Essay Need A Thesis?

Thesis statement is an absolute must-have for any reflective essay. It serves as a bridge between the author’s judgments and results. Without it, an essay will lack a logical element. Thesis of a reflection essay has the shape of a short phrase explaining whether or not the author’s assumptions were met. Without a doubt, thesis statement is the most significant sentence in a whole reflection paper: its focus and cohesion are defined in this small phrase.

The examples of perfect thesis statements for a reflective essay are as follows: “From this lecture / life experience / reading / example, I got acquainted with / I became keen on….” Don’t reveal everything about yourself in this single statement. Just as SEOs do with identifying keys while writing some selling texts, highlight the clues of your paper in the thesis. Any thesis statement of a reflective essay has to be extremely personalized: your identity should figuratively scream in it.

Thesis statement is usually met at the end of the introduction section, rarely – in the last paragraph. Still, the chronology has to be followed, so the first version is accepted more regularly. Despite the fact a reflective essay implies an informal style of writing, the thesis must be formed in an academic or professional tone (depends on the goals of your essay). Whenever you accomplish your paper for one of the numerous lectures in a range, involve an academic tone. In case you’re about to submit a reflective essay for some position, turn to a professional tone.

Another function of the thesis statement is allowing the applicant to write about specific sub-topics under a primary one. It is about to end up with some sort of writer’s ramblings.

The author can change the style of writing further in the text, but in terms of the first paragraph and especially the thesis statement, it has to be written only in first person singular. So, any citations or thoughts of other people are not acceptable in this part of the reflection essay. Strong persuasive alternatives (“Because the lack of time increased my levels of both stress and joy, one day I found myself too much disorganized, before finally finding a sense of confidence…”) should replace weak, passive statements like, “My experience working on this history case had both negative and positive consequences.” Concise and clarify! Thesis statement has to provoke the reader to continue the discussion by reading further and formulate an overall impression about the author as well as his own thoughts concerning the subject.

While developing a thesis statement, think of it as of the conclusion. These two parts of a reflective essay have a lot in common. As a matter of fact, the formula of any good thesis statement looks this way: a debatable claim + supportable reason for that claim = an excellent argument.

In the meantime, while spending sleepless nights thinking how your thesis statement should sound, it’s better to visit a professional academic writing site to obtain both a strong thesis statement and a complete reflective essay aimed to bring you an A!

The Best Way to Write a Reflective Essay

Just like any other type of academic essay writing, you have to submit your work in time. So, make sure you specify the deadline after receiving your task. Nowadays, it is popular to submit reflective essays online. All the details like topic, deadline, volume and other requirements can be easily found on the page of an educational institution you wish to apply for.

You may be asked to present a reflective essay in order to support self-designed projects. The commission cares about your perceptions of a particular situation or problem. Write down everything you consider relative to the topic, as this essay type allows the flow of imagination. But don’t lie through one’s teeth – it won’t add up to your overall grade. It is also key to write in the first person singular.

Don’t worry about the volume: mention as many valuable details as possible. In case there is something important left to say, it’s better to overload your reflective essay a bit rather than lose some score for missing the point. To make any observation vivid, provide a persuasive example. However, there is absolutely no need to describe some routine actions, one’s appearance, Rome’s sights, etc. Don’t confuse a reflection essay with an informative one! Reflective essay has to act in the way an evaluating process does.

Most of time, your essay will refer to a single person or event, but you have to spread it in a way so that the reader gets a chance to learn more about you than commonly known fact present. Stress on what that event or a person means to you. I.e., “Sir Abraham Lincoln is the treasure to my soul, a hero I wish to follow in his footsteps as far as he was the one to break the ice of American democracy”, “To me, the industrial revolution associates with a new-born music genre. As a musician, I’m just keen on the history of music…”

Your introduction section should begin with a statement regarding the time and circumstances under which a relevant experience was obtained (“While, on fieldwork, I faced…”, “When I was accomplishing my internship at a local hospital, I’ve noticed…,” “Last summer, while volunteering for Lake Blue camping program, I observed a number of edifying situations…”). The first phrase has to lead to the core theme highlighted in the second or the third sentence (“Based on my teaching experience, I would like to share my ideas concerning blind children education and their role in society…”).

The body of a reflective essay is the right place for a short story. Involve some curious twist in the plot while building a bridge between the second and third paragraphs. The fundamental question to be answered in the body section is “Why?”: why did you enjoy your vacation, why you believe protecting rare animal species is important, why have you dedicated your last summer to charity work, etc. Most of time applicants describe only the positive moments. However, it looks less confident than when the essay consists of some negative emotions as well. As we all understand, life is not a bed of roses. So, try to be more realistic.

The last-ditch effort is about thinking of an impressive and remarkable end. If your conclusions make the reader wake up at night and think of them, your essay will be most probably selected out of all the rest. An author may conclude on a happy note and, conversely, the essay may end with lessons learned: “Despite all the damage my dad’s bankruptcy brought to my family, I’ve learnt to survive within the harsh business environment.”, “To sum up, today I am a lucky owner of an even better bicycle than the one I had been dreaming about since I was a little kid.”

In order to meet all the requirements of a reflective essay and obtain a brilliant piece of work, there is an option to contact a specialized academic writing service online. They’re providing high-quality papers in the shortest terms, so if you lack time and energy, it might be your best way to go.

reflective essay

Tips to Make Your Reflective Essay Shine

We’ve all been there. You are overwhelmed with ideas, got in the mood for writing and seem to know the right essay layout.

But somehow you mess everything up. What is it that you might have done wrong? Why don’t the efforts to craft an ideal essay pay off? In case you are looking for the answer to these questions, you’ve come to the right place. Read the article and learn a secret receipt for an ideal essay.

“Think different”

Compelling essay content makes half the battle. So if you are lucky to choose the topic, make sure it’s original and captivating.

But even more important thing is to stick to the subject and avoid writing irrelevant ideas. Even if they are absolutely unique and inventive but don’t answer core questions, your essay will fail

Sort out your ideas first

What’s done in haste is likely to fail. Although it’s not an axiom, but when it comes to essay writing, especially if you’re not a pro, time pressure may be your enemy no. 1.

Slow down. Sort out your ideas, inserting them into corresponding passage. Simply speaking, make an outline. You can then do more research to fit every essay part.

Be practical

I suggest you think of your essay as a trip. Naturally before you set off on a journey to an absolutely unknown place, you will arrange a route. It’s all the same with essay.

Your outline is a kind of map that shows what to write and in what order your ideas should appear. If you have read part one of this article, then you’ve probably made an essay plan. If so, let’s start our trip.

Keep your essay focused

The moment you start writing your first paragraph, get straight to the point. No waffling or long introductory sentences that just serve to increase word count. Tell your reader what your essay is going to be about but avoid details. Close your introductory part with a thesis statement that will tie together ideas you have previously mentioned.

It’s time you showed your aces

The next two paragraphs will be dedicated to your arguments. This is where you should give persuasive reasons for the reader to take your viewpoint. Even if your ideas are not revolutionized enough, you can make them powerful using forceful language.

When it finally comes to the conclusion, there is one golden rule to follow. Don’t write any new ideas otherwise it won’t be a closing part but rather a continuation with no clear bottom line. Instead, you’re required to restate your arguments and show how they contribute to the main essay idea.

Proofread your work!

If you are after an excellent essay, then you should leave enough time for editing. Don’t do it right after you stopped writing. Put it off for a while and then get down to a proofreading process.

When editing, mind essential essay elements that will influence its success. These are structure, compelling topic, logical flow of ideas and clear language. Simple as it may seem, writing an excellent essay will take you some time. So start practicing now. Good luck!

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