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Studentsí appropriation, rejection and perceptions of creativity in reflective journals


O'Connell, T and Dyment, JE and Smith, HA, Students' appropriation, rejection and perceptions of creativity in reflective journals, International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 27, (1) pp. 1-13. ISSN 1812-9129 (2015) [Refereed Article]


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This paper explores the intersection of reflection, journal writing and creativity. Undergraduate students who participated in a residential field camp were required to keep a creative reflective journal to demonstrate their theoretical and practical understandings of their experience. This study reports on the content analysis of 42 student journals and interviews with eight students that explored if and how an invitation to be creative in a reflective journaling assignment was appropriated or rejected (as evidenced by the content analysis) and experienced (as evidenced by the interviews) by students. Content analysis revealed that 14% of journals contained no creativity, 50% had basic levels of creativity, 31% had moderate levels and 5% had high levels. Interviews were analyzed using themes of relevance, ownership, control and innovation and provided insight into reasons why students did and did not use creativity to support their journals. In the discussion, the concepts of deep and surface approaches to learning provide some insightful explanation as to why students were creative in their reflective journal. This paper concludes by providing several support strategies to help students enhance their skills related to reflection, journal writing and creativity.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:reflective journals, creativity
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Curriculum and pedagogy
Research Field:Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Learner and learning
Objective Field:Learner and learning not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Dyment, JE (Associate Professor Janet Dyment)
UTAS Author:Smith, HA (Dr Heidi Smith)
ID Code:107101
Year Published:2015
Deposited By:Education
Deposited On:2016-03-04
Last Modified:2018-05-04
Downloads:100 View Download Statistics

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