13 Nov 2022


How to Write a Reflective Journal with Tips and Examples

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Academic level: Master’s

Paper type: Book Report

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In the course of the last two readings, I have encountered the subject of learning in context. With regards to the contextual learning, I found out that a context can be the immediate learning environment of the person, or could extend to further social environments including society and culture. This journal entry is a reflective paper on the readings that I have engaged in recently, namely for the context-bound learning. In this reflective piece, I consider the matters that I find practically useful and stimulating as I engage in this reading.

Stimulating Affairs 

One of the most stimulating ideas in learning contexts was the interaction between the learner and their environment. The give-and-take nature of the relationship presented one of the most interesting issues of discussion in the learning process. Learners are not only affected by their environment, but will also often affect their environment in a bid to make it more conducive for the learning activity. Effective teaching is seen as a combination of the learning environment as much as it is about the effectiveness of teaching. Therefore, effective teachers will create a supportive and creative environment for student participation. The student will then influence the environment by being participative in the learning process.

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The environment of the learner goes beyond simply the physical surroundings of their learning spaces, but also includes the emotional, socio-economic and cultural factors that influence their learning processes. Attitudes towards learning can even present the environment for learning in a student! A learner will respond to learning stimuli. For instance, playing a cooperative game promotes the learning of cooperative behavior among children. This could be implemented on a larger scale. For example, the application of strategic video game playing among learners can teach them problem solving mechanisms as well as critical thinking skills.

Moreover, the knowledge of specific consequences arising from certain actions can tune students towards the learning of behaviors that will most probably give them the most desired consequence for their action. In effect, they have learned how to acquire positive behaviors that will help them evade punitive or adverse consequences. If a child is aware of the dangers of crossing the road without following the set rules, they will most probably follow those rules to avoid the accident (consequence) that would arise. Therefore, the reinforcement is an integral part of the learning process as they increase the probability of a response. The different reinforcement will be applied differently for diverse situations requiring differentiated responses.

For example, a positive reinforcement will come following the performance of a god act, while a negative reinforcement will come as a result of a failure on student’s part that will be achieved by taking away something. One of the most intriguing things about reinforcement is the frequency of negative reinforcements as opposed to positive ones. Despite the addition in presentation punishment, the learner will receive negative reinforcements three out of four times. It is likely that the learner may become used to negative learning reinforcements so much as to no longer adhere to their implementation. This is a point of concern especially with the issue of constant negative reinforcement application. This could be a point of further reflection on possible applications of positive incentives to neutralize the effect of negative incentives.

Issues in Practice 

Some of the pertinent issues I found to be very applicable in the course of learning include the provision of a good environment for learning as a necessary tool/stimulus in the learning process. The applicability of the different incentives is undeniable. Incentives to learning present some of the best practice approaches to the learning experience. The provision of incentive to complete their learning through doing homework at home is one of the ways in which the learning process can be facilitated. While the positive reinforcements may be limited in the learning environment such as the school, other factors provide the sufficient reinforcement for the learning process, including parental assistance (Kim & Schneider, 2005), cultural attitudes towards education (Summers & Volet, 2008), and inclusive practices in the education system (Avramidis & Norwich, 2002), among others.

The learning process can thus be found to be occurring in many different ways including the model process. In this process, a person is shown to the learners and their example is explained for emulation by students. For example, Obama’s presidency has been widely used as a model for learning on the importance of hard work and resilience in the course of seeking after one’s passion. Furthermore, this example can be used to allude to the power of education to transform one’s life to one that can become desirable. On the other hand, negative examples/models can be used to demonstrate the negative effects that happen when there is a failure on the part of the learner’s expectations.

Live learning techniques can also be learned. This includes the conducting of experiments or research into specific issues of concern. Students who are writing their theses often have to conduct quantitative analyses and learn about common trends in their field of interest. Moreover, younger learners perform small-scale experiments for class work such as germination, transpiration and the like.

Lastly, the symbolic models present learning opportunities for the learner. For example, the presentation of a movie or short play in the course of a literature class as a method of learning how to pick out themes and characters is an example of an applicable method of learning. Moreover, the portrayal of certain characters in media vehicles has shaped the attitudes of learners concerning a particular issue in study. Research has shown that children are more likely to learn through what they see rather than what they hear. Visual learning aids are therefore important tools to the learning process because they bring the learning experience to life.

Visual learning aids are not only limited to the use of technology for the facilitation of learning, but will equally cover the vicarious learning techniques that are engaged in the course of learning. For example, when a child observes that another is getting punished for something, they will most probably shy away from that behavior lest they receive punishment themselves. They have learned by observation. Effectually, they have in a sense engaged visual aid techniques of learning.


In conclusion, the application of various learning methods within a context of learning have properly been construed and reflected in this paper. The interaction of the learner and their environment are issues of concern when one considers how this relationship occurs. Furthermore, the applicability of the use of the different models of learning has been seen.


Avramidis, E., & Norwich, B. (2002). Teachers' attitudes towards integration/inclusion: a review of the literature. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 17(2) , 129-147.

Kim, D., & Schneider, B. (2005). Social capital in action: Alignment of parental support in adolescents' transition to postsecondary education. Social Forces, 84(2) , 1181-1206.

Summers, M., & Volet, S. (2008). Students’ attitudes towards culturally mixed groups on international campuses: impact of participation in diverse and non ‐ diverse groups. Studies in higher education, 33(4) , 357-370.

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StudyBounty. (2023, September 15). How to Write a Reflective Journal with Tips and Examples.


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