Review through a self lens

Critical self-reflection of our teaching practices is an important way to maintain ongoing growth and development as a teacher. No matter how effective we are, we can always improve.  Reflective practice in teaching can:

  • Validate teaching strengths to build upon and share with others
  • Acknowledge teaching  weaknesses that require addressing
  • Create understanding on how you as a teacher learn and the impact this has on your teaching
  • Develop self-awareness
  • Identify and learn from mistakes within teaching practices that can be creating barriers to learning
  • Record your growth and development as a teaching academic

There are a number of theories, framework and strategies that conceptualise the process of reflective practice and the role it can play in improving teaching practices.

  • Theory 1: Gibbs Reflective Cycle Taken from: Gibbs, G. Learning by Doing: A Guide to Teaching and Learning Methods.
  • Theory 2: Strategies for nine dimensions of reflective practice. Taken from: Zwozdiak-Myers, P. (2012).

Reflective Journaling

An effective way to reflect on your teaching practice is through the process of journaling.  Whether that be in written, audio or video form, journaling provides an opportunity to easily record thoughts, feelings, ideas and reasoning, and then to access them at a later date to explore concepts in a deeper context, or explore growth and changing ideals over time.  For those interested in commencing a journal, consider using the Mahara ePortfolio journaling component.



  • Ainsworth, S.  (2005). Becoming a relational academic. Originally retrieved from:
  • Boud, D. (2001). Using journal writing to enhance reflective practice. In English, L. and Gillen, M. (Eds.) Promoting Journal Writing in Adult Education. New Directions in Adult and Continuing Education No. 90. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 9-18.
  • Brandenburg, R. (2018) Reflective Practice in Education Made Real: Reflection, Feedback and Teaching. Taylor & Francis Group
  • Brandenburg, R. (2008) Powerful Pedagogy: Self-Study of a Teacher Educator’s Practice. Springer Science.
  • Finlay, L. (2008).  Reflecting on ‘reflective practice.’ pp. 1–7. The Centres for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETLs), The Open University (UK).
  • Leitch, R. & Day, C. (2000): Action research and reflective practice: towards a holistic view, Educational Action Research, 8:1, 179-193.
  • Sellars, M. (2014) Reflective Practice for Teachers. London: Sage Publications Ltd.
  • Sherwood, G. D., & Horton-Deutsch, S. (2012) Reflective Practice Transforming Education and Improving Outcomes. Indianapolis, USA: Sigma Theta Tau International.
  • Zeichner, K. & Liston, D. (1996) Reflective Teaching: An Introduction. New Jersey: Lawrence Earlbaum Associates, Inc.)
  • Zwozdiak-Myers, P. (2012). The teacher's reflective practice handbook. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge.