Psyc 2301: Directions for the Reflection Discussion Assignment
The purpose of each RD discussion assignment is to:
- Demonstrate that you have thought, learned, and made new awarenesses about some of the psychological concepts or topics presented in the course.
- Demonstrate that you are actively engaged in the learning of the material in this course by commenting on your classmates’ Reflection posts. This discussion and your active participation in the conversations will also demonstrate your attendance in this course. You must participate each week of the assignment by reading all RD papers, selecting those that you want to contribute additional information to by making supportive posts.
- Recognize the purpose of and expectations for discussions.
- Read the instructions, prepare for the discussion by completing the work assigned.
- Be concise, be clear.
- Gather and reference your sources. Don’t copy and paste text from sources – include the reference(s) to course materials and/or url links to non-course materials. Use a formal documentation style, preferably APA Style.
- Follow instructions (i.e., post once, comment twice) and contribute as instructed (on time).
- Include respectful point/counterpoint arguments with your opinion stated but open to argument.
- Provide examples of experiences that relate to the discussion and support your argument.
A Resource: How to Write an A+ Discussion Posting
How to write a Reflection Post
Each Reflection Post should be about between two or five pages or a minimum of 300-600 words with references for your sources. Compose your Reflection Post in a word processor in which the number of words can be counted. In Word 2007 or 2010, the count is in the bottom left corner of the screen. 300-600 Words is about two or four pages typed, double-spaced text on a page. For each Reflection Post, select a psychological concept or topic found in your book from information from another website for your reflection paper.
The Reflection Post should include the following
- Writing a short summary of the psychological concept or topic,
- Reporting on a life experience that you have had, observed, or read about in a newspaper, magazine or website and how the life experience relates to the psychological concept or topic, and
- Reflecting on the connection between the psychological concept/topic and the life experience by explaining what you think about it and how this new connection or learning of the psychological concept might impact your future life performance, behavior, or decisions.
- Provide three citation sources for your paper.
If you include information from a source; e.g., coursebook, websites, books, journals, newspapers, or magazines, in the writing of your paper, then you must cite the source(s) by including the reference(s) listed at the end of your paper, using either APA Style.
Remember that I am interested in you learning the psychological concepts rather than memorizing them. The RD post and comment posts give you an opportunity to come up with your own examples as they apply to your understanding of the psychological concept.
Also I want you to think about the material that we are covering, not just accept it or deny it. “Why is it that way? If that is true, would this also be true?” I don’t want you to simply absorb what the experts tell you. I want you to have enough knowledge about psychological concepts that you’ll be able to tell who may be saying something valuable and who isn’t. Knowledge doesn’t mean just knowing information; knowledge is also having the ability to question – knowing what questions to ask and how to ask them. Saying “I disagree with that; I don’t think that’s true” isn’t going to get it done unless you have reason to back up your beliefs. Use these reflection papers to learn information and to practice questioning.
The Reflection post also gives you and me a chance to “talk” about psychology, one-on-one and with your classmates. You can expect me to participate in the Reflection Discussions by reading and commenting on your Reflection post and comment posts to others. Sometimes I’ll have quite a bit to say to you and other classmates; sometimes you may just get a few words or a smiley face.
How to Post your Reflection Paper in the Reflection Discussion Topic.
After composing your Reflection Post in your Word processor software, proofread it for grammar and spelling because points will be taken off for grammatical errors. Make sure that you have included documentation of your references at the end of your paper. Then go into the Canvas Course, open (click on) the Reflection Discussion Topic and then click on “Add Reply to Topic”. Using the editor box, copy and paste your Reflection Paper into the open space (the editor box). Always proofread your post to check the spelling, grammar, and formatting of your paper, before posting.
DO NOT attach your Reflection Post as a file to the discussion post, as attachments are too cumbersome to open, read, and to respond. There will be a 10-point penalty if your Reflection paper is attached as a file to your post without it being copied and pasted into the editor box.
Note: After posting, if you find errors in it, you can always edit your post. If you do this, be sure to add the original posting date in the first line of your post, as the date that you edit will replace your original postdate. (Since I do not grade this assignment until after the closing date, I will need to know your original postdate for grading purposes.)
Writing Comment Posts to other classmates’ Reflection Posts
In addition to your Reflection Post, you are to make a minimum of 3 comment posts to any of your classmates or instructor’s post. NOTE: A minimum of 3 comment posts meets expectations for this assignment and are worth 10 points toward the RD grade. This is not the highest expectation of Comment posts; more than 2 Comment posts will earn the full amount of 15 points toward your RD grade.
Comment posts provide additional researched information, personal experiences or another viewpoint that helps to clarify or provide more information about the topic. Each comment post should be about a paragraph of several sentences. You should demonstrate that you are reading your classmates’ Reflection Posts and making comments to those that are of most interest to you. Comment posts should be made throughout the weeks of the assignment and not all within one week or during the last week of the assignment. Stay actively engaged in the conversations by participating in them each week of the assignment.
How your Reflection Post and Minimum of 3 Comment Posts are Graded
Your reflection & comment posts will not be graded until after the RD assignment ends. Refer to the Reflection Discussion Grading Rubric to see how each of the components of this assignment will be graded. Criteria will consist of (1) original articulation of Reflection Post (25 points), (2) quality of Comment posts (15 points), (3) grammar, spelling and documentation (15 points), (4) timeliness and active participation in this assignment (10 points), and evidence of learning through reflection & discussion from your overall posts (35 points).
Note: you can continue to make posts in the Reflection Discussion Topic after the end date, but they will not be included in the grading of this assignment.
Explanation of Quality Reflection Posts & Comment Posts
There are three levels of quality Reflection Posts: Non-Reflective (text-dependent), Reflection on Experience or Reflection on Awareness. Try to write the highest level of a quality reflection post that will earn you the maximum number of points – which is the Reflection on Awareness. Below is the descriptions of each type of reflection paper post and what is expected in a comment post:
|Non-reflective||Student summarizes information, course content.|
|Reflection on experience||Student connects information, course content with personal experience and demonstrates awareness that what has been learned is meaningful. Becomes aware of thought processes and reasoning in relation to new information.|
|Reflection on awareness||Student identifies ways in which new knowledge may impact behavior, decisions, or performance in the future. Student is aware of his/her own learning and concludes the new knowledge can be used in a meaningful way. May question methods because of new knowledge and begin to develop new ideas.|
Non-reflective Post (needs improvement): A post that reflects what was read in the text with little to no extension of the information. Responses at this level typically only summarize what the reading selection was about by reconstructing the basics of the author’s message. The response does not extend to ideas beyond the textbook’s message and does not demonstrate application of the concept to life experiences.
Reflection on Experience Post (Better): A post that reflects the text reading with constructive insights that extend beyond the text by giving examples of experiences that relate to the developmental concept/topic. The post may provide the expression of personal feelings in response to the reading, and inclusion of related new ideas or questions that are provoked as a result of the reading and the student’s reflecting on its message.
Reflection on Awareness Post (Best): A post that reflects the text with constructive insights that extend beyond the text, and then adds additional indicators of complexity. This response often discusses what the reading is about and what the point of it is; includes experiences and application levels of thinking with real-life experience. It often addresses the beyond-the-lines questions, and involves the expression of personal feelings and related new ideas or questions that are provoked as a result of the reading and the student’s application to life experiences. In addition, text-independent responses with complexity may include other indicators of complexity such as the inclusion of related beyond-the-text examples, additional information from other sources, the acknowledgment of a possible alternative viewpoint, well-informed question-asking and possible next steps, and ideas and/or plans in response to the original reading.
Timeliness & Participation: Comment posts are assessed on the frequency and timeliness of the posts. Together, the reflection and comment posts should simulate group discussions that would happen in a face-to-face classroom. Therefore, it is expected that there be a lively conversation with interaction and participation in the discussions. Posts should be made to several different students that are posted over several weeks during the discussion, and not all on one day or one week. Posts will also be assessed on how a student participates with others. Opinions should be sought from others. Posts should be engaging, leading to more reflection that might also take the concept/topic to another level.
Grammar and Use of APA Style Documentation: Good spelling, grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure are expected in all posts. In addition, references are required in your Reflection post and possibly your Comment posts if you refer to research sources. Carefully proofread all of your writing before posting. If you make a post and then find errors, you can edit your post; just be sure to include the original posting date in the title of your post