How to write a reflection

Reflective practice is important in Higher Education and in the work place. Good reflections should be an integral part of every student E-portfolio. Use the resources and tips on this page to help you to write good reflections on your learning.

How to reflect in 5 easy steps


It is important that you learn how to write a good reflection early on in your studies.  Below are 5 easy steps to follow when writing your reflection for an artefact or for a category in your e-portfolio. You can remember the steps by memorising the acronym STARL which is made up of the first letters of the five steps.

STARL: Your 5 easy steps for reflection

  1. Situation – describe the context in which the experience occurred.

  2. Task – describe what was actually required of you in the situation.

  3. Action – describe the steps that you personally took in response to the task. When reflecting on your actions, ask yourself why you chose to respond in that particular way.

  4. Result – describe the outcome of your actions. How did your actions contribute to the completion of the task? How did your actions affect the final outcome of the situation?

  5. Learnt – describe the things you have learned from the experience. Highlight any skills or abilities that you have developed or improved as a result of the experience. Think about how you might apply what you’ve learned to other situations.

Finally, try to keep it brief and precise.


Some additional reflection questions you might want to ask yourself


  • Which artefact is your best work? Why?
  • Which artefact is your most important work? Why?
  • Which artefact is your most satisfying work? Why?
  • Which artefact is your most unsatisfying work? Why?
  • In which artefact did you stretch yourself the most, taking the greatest risk in what you tried to do?
  • List three things you learned by completing this ePortfolio.
  • What does this ePortfolio say about you as an emerging professional or scholar in this discipline?
  • What are your goals for continuing to learn about this discipline

(Adapted from Suskie, Linda. 2008. Assessing Student Learning: A common sense guide. 2nd ed. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, p. 207)


ePortfolio: May's Reflective Learning

Reflective practice in action at university and beyond


Smith Maru
29 October 2015, 3:42 PM

Thanks a lot for the tips.

Semiti j Tuiloma
18 February 2016, 9:53 AM

 thanks for the information on the five steps (STARL)

Herrik Bailey
25 February 2016, 10:35 AM
The 5 steps given above really help me in improving my reflection journal, thank so much for the information...
Lisa Posimani
29 February 2016, 9:19 AM

Thank you for making the topic Reflections clearer.

Benedict Kausua
01 March 2016, 12:27 PM

With the five steps it provide me light in how to write better reflection. One thing important that i learn from the video is, documentation of everything that you do since you cannot remember everything that you do. 

Flory Andrew
23 March 2016, 5:21 AM

Thanks for the HEADS UP..

23 March 2016, 1:54 PM

great help in clarifying reflection writing....time to start writing :)

Flory Hiti
23 March 2016, 3:00 PM

Thanks for that steps, to help me from my confusion


23 March 2016, 4:08 PM

So helpful indeed,really appreciate it and hope to work towards it accordingly. 

Key4. Moulongo
23 March 2016, 6:58 PM
Thanks for your help for giving 5 easy step for reflection. I really accept it