The Reflective Essay

Most students will not enter careers in professional writing.  It is important, however, that they learn to express themselves in writing in a number of different ways, because there may come a time in their future when they will need to have the skills to produce the types of writing.  A reflective essay is often seen as unnecessary by students because they see no practical application in the ultimate world of work, but it is important for two reasons:  1) it further develops basic writing skills; 2) it forces students to think about events, experiences, or things that others have said or written and to react personally to all of these.  Thinking critically in this manner is also a skill that will serve one well in adult life.

Teachers enjoy assigning and evaluating reflective essays because it allows them to see how students are progressing and in what areas of writing they still need improvements.  Students can also see their progress, which might be a good motivator to write more. 

Writing the Reflective Essay

Take heart! There is no research involved in a reflective essay.  The point of this piece of writing is to respond to an experience, an event, or something you read or saw. You might be asked to reflect upon the worst or best experience of your life, on a local or national tragedy, or perhaps a relationship with a parent, grandparent, or sibling.  All of these topics cause you to think, to call up emotions, and then to put them in writing. While not allowed in other types of writing (except narratives), the use of the personal pronoun “I” is expected.

How to Structure the Essay

Like all essays, your piece will have an introduction, body and conclusion.  Your introduction should be a great attention-grabbing statement, so that your reader will want to know more. For example, if you were writing about the worst experience of your life, you might begin with, “March 14, 2007 is a day that will live in my infamy.” 

The body paragraphs should be divided into specific reflections, thoughts or emotions.  Sometimes, however, they may be sequential, if the essay also tells a story. The reflections are then merged into the events.

The conclusion is a personal statement about how this experience, event, or reading caused a change in your thinking, attitude, etc.

It is also important to note that many reflective pieces are presented orally, to classmates, to groups within the workplace, or to groups in organizations to which one belongs.  In this instance the structure remains the same, but you actually write a speech.  You must think of the reflective essay as a type of speech, and, of course, you must be aware of how to write a presentation that is reflective and filled with descriptive language which will give your audience a picture.

Are You Struggling?

If so, you may want to contact a reputable online custom essay service for professional writing help.  Whether you need to produce an essay or write a speech of reflection, you can buy writing samples or original work, and most services offer a relatively cheap essay price for a basic work without research.  If you have a reflective essay or speech to write or do not know how to write a good presentation, professional writers can help a great deal. When you are able to see exceptional writing of any type, you can use it to learn how to make your own writing and speaking more effective.