Gibbs (1988) suggests ‘learners are involved in an active exploration of experience’, meaning that we can learn from our experiences.
There will inevitably be many times during studies, and in life, when you try things, and they don’t work as well as you might have hoped. However, crucially, they still offer an opportunity to learn from the experience.
There are various ‘reflective models’ which can help you to actively reflect on your experiences, and importantly, consider what you would do differently next time. For example Rolfe et.al (2001) ask three simple questions:
Next time you recognise an opportunity to learn from an experience or situation, why not begin with these three questions to help you unpick your next steps.
It is important to reflect on your experiences throughout your studies. In particular, you might make time to reflect more fully at the beginning or end of each semester, or before you start on your next assignment. This will allow you to focus on what you might do next to develop even further.
Some reflections you might like to consider: