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How To Write A Reflection Paper In 2021 – A Step By Step Guide

by Akram

Reflective writing has become a very popular trend. When it comes to learning how to write a reflection paper, there are certain factors that you need to keep in mind in order to successfully write a reflective essay. 

In this day and age, all the popular colleges and universities have made it mandatory for their students to learn how to write a reflection paper. Since you are reading this article, chances are you too want to write a reflection paper. 

If that is the case indeed, then I would highly suggest you read this article to the end as through this article I will be telling you how to write a reflection paper and all they do and don’ts of it. 

Before I proceed, I would like to inform you that the term reflective essay and reflection paper is the same thing, so I will be using these two terms synonymously in this article. 

So without wasting further time, let us get started. 

What Is A Reflection Paper?

A reflection paper is nothing but a paper that lets you take a personal approach to a particular topic and express your points of view and experiences. A reflection paper can be informative, educative, and personal. 

It delves deep into how an incident changed and shaped your character or changed your thought process and understanding of the subject matter. 

Do note that even though some reflection papers are informative and educative, a majority of them are very subjective and personal. Even though it is personal, it is well organized and maintains an academic style of writing.   

How To Write A Reflection Paper? 

Writing a reflection paper can be broadly categorized into three parts, the part you need to take care of before writing, the things you need to do to get organized, and the rules you must maintain while writing.  

Before Writing 

Before Writing 

While learning how to write a reflection paper, there are some things you need to be before writing.

1. Brainstorming Session

This is the part where you find the necessary things that you are going to write on the topic. I would suggest you take a piece of pen and paper and jot down the summary of your experiences; these should not be too descriptive but rather to the point as you will be describing them later while writing the reflective essay. 

Ensure that you have a proper reason why these incidences and experiences stand out. 

2. Create A Chart

In order to make everything less clumsy, you need to create a chart that will help you keep track of the emotions you are associating with a particular event. You can take a step further and have the column divided into three parts. 

In the first column, you can write anything that the subject matter found to be important and the details of what you found important. In the second column, you can consider writing your own response to those events. And finally, in the third column, you can write only the things that you want to share on your reflection paper. 

3. Keep Questioning Yourself

This part comes in handy when you do not quite remember the feelings or the responses you had to that particular event. Ask yourself questions like How has the event changed your thinking, how it has affected you. 

Read Also: How To Write An Essay: A Step By Step Guide


While writing a reflection paper, you need to be very organized with the structure if you want to write how to write a reflection essay. 

1. Keep It Short And To The Point

The word limit of reflection papers is usually somewhere between 300 and 700 words, so you need to make sure that the length of your reflection paper stays within the limit. 

However, if your instructor has specifically told you to extend the word limit, then you certainly can. 

2. Making A Thesis Statement

In just 50 words, write what your expectations regarding the particular incident were and how it is now. Do not make it too long. Keep it short and simple. 

3. Include The Conclusions In The Body

Your body must contain several paragraphs, and each paragraph should conclude with the details. It should unfold how you arrived at those conclusions. 

Like this, there will be several conclusions in the body, each being explained with proper details. Each paragraph should deal with different topics and must end with different conclusions.

4. Summary Of Conclusions

At the end of the reflection essay, you will have to provide a summary of all the conclusions. It should include the lessons you learned, your feelings, and the end result of the experience. 

Basically, you will have to conclude the paper by giving a summary of all the conclusions. 

Read Also: How To Write An Analysis Essay: A Step By Step Guide

While Writing

While Writing

While writing your reflection paper, you need to keep these in mind. 

1. The Wise Revelation Of Information

In order to learn how to write a reflection paper, you need to reveal the information very wisely. As you would have known by now that reflection papers are highly personal, so you should think twice before adding the information. 

While writing reflection papers, it is recommended that you do not use personal details like names. 

2. An Academic Style Must Be Followed

Even though reflection papers are personal, yet a proper academic style must be kept intact. After all, you are writing this paper on behalf of your university. 

3. Use Transition Words

Transition words include ‘for instance,’ ‘furthermore,’ ‘moreover,’ etc. It ensures that there is a professional tone to your reflection paper.

4. Proofread

Before submitting your reflection paper, you must ensure that your paper is proofread. You must ensure that there are no grammatical errors or problems with sentence constructions. 

Most importantly, it should be plagiarism-free.  If you are writing on a personal computer, I would highly suggest you use software like Copyscape and Grammarly.

Final Thoughts

There you go, that was pretty much everything you need to know about learning how to write a reflection paper. I hope you have found this article to be informative. If you have any further queries or feedback in regards to this article, comment on them down below.

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