Students Engage in Reflection Activities: Connecting leadership theory, their experiences, and themselves
Reflection activities emerged as a vital tool for leadership development, especially in concert with action and observation. The reflection activities took many forms, from a written journal to reacting to something a fellow participant said to simply remaining still and thinking about a question. High quality leadership programs use reflection and activities designed to help students make meaning of their experiences as a tool for leadership development and learning.
Actions. Students engage in reflection activities is brought to practice within programs in three ways. First, programs engage students in written reflection activities in the form of journals, essays about readings, and other projects. Second, programs engage students in verbal reflection in reaction to discussions, questions posed, and current events. Third, programs formally engage students in completing vision and goal setting activities and other projects to personalize the concepts to the individual.
Effects on students. There are two student learning and leadership development outcomes from students who engage in reflection activities. First, students learn more about themselves, develop future visions and goals, and become more purposeful with being themselves and making congruent decisions. Second, students develop a meaningful leadership philosophy, model, or framework to analyze their own thoughts and actions to ultimately integrate improvements in their life and leadership.