An extract from my recent reflection assignment.

Open to change

A major component of critical reflection is one of being open to change, and self- flagellation is something I need to address.   If I do not focus on this issue, I will continue to shy away from collaborative events in which I will be required to contribute to discussion and share ideas with fellow students and researchers, and this will render me unable to fully achieve the requirements and expectations a professional doctorate demands. 

My mentor has helped in breaking down my personal barriers through regular and encouraging skype sessions.  The written feedback from both my markers on both assignments have also helped in allowing myself to break free from the uncertainty I feel.  To enable further change in building my confidence in public speaking, I have become a member of the local Society of Toastmasters Club.  I have set up a blog that allows me to voice my thoughts to the world, although I am wary of the responses.  To embrace social media further, I have created a Twitter and LinkedIn account and have posted on these forums.  I have also posted comments on various other blogs.  This is my way of creating inclusion in a world that I have, up to now, felt excluded.  By implementing these measures, I hope to be able to express ideas, and debate with others, with an air of confidence and self-assurance.

I feel I am on the precipice of a new world that will unlock opportunities and experiences that are unfamiliar to me.  I find this both exciting and daunting.  However, hard work and determination throughout my academic journey has allowed me to get to this point and, with continued resolve, I will overcome my internal conflicts.  I am therefore taking the advice of Mezirow (1990) and unblocking my internal constraints which will allow me to transform into the liberated and confident Doctor of Education I want to be. 


Mezirow, J. (1990) Fostering Critical Reflection in Adulthood: A Guide to Transformative and Emancipatory Learning.  Available at:

4 thoughts on “An extract from my recent reflection assignment.”

  1. I think you are taking an amazing and brave step in developing your public speaking skills. In fact, you know how impressed I am with the. idea as I have joined you! Your advice on my academic writing has been too good for words (no pun intended) so hope I can support you in return somehow. You have taken the first step by joining the Toastmasters; I can’t wait to hear your first speech x

    1. Hi Jennie, and thanks for your support. You know how nervous its going to be, but we’ll both get through it. Lets think big… we’ll be giving award winning speeches in no time! Your time will come to support me, I’ve still got another 3 years. Looking forward to it though. Thanks for reading and commenting x

  2. Hi Gillian
    I found it really interesting reading your blog. I think we do tend to feel like we are the only one feeling like we do. I can reassure you that I have been feeling the same. I am pleased that contact with your mentor has supported you. I think the more we engage in sharing our journeys with our peers in forums such as this the better supported we will feel. I am impressed with the number of forums you have engaged with – I have only taken part in one so far.
    I think it makes us feel exposed and vulnerable.
    Keep up with your blog 🙂

    1. Hi Debs
      Thanks for your comments. I thought I was the only one who felt/feels like this, so thankyou for sharing that you feel the same way. I think your right, by sharing, vulnerability and exposure will gradually subside. Here’s hoping anyway. I actually forced myself to comment on others forums. I am still nervous of doing this, but I figure the more I do it, the more I am comfortable doing it. Try it, it’s quite liberating.

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