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Reflective analysis report is an interesting part of Applied Management Project. As an individual I had learnt lot from this project in terms of knowing my weaknesses and future lessons which are applicable in my professional life. This report demonstrates the basic concept of learning. As per my understanding the reflection report also makes us learn about other's feelings and vice versa.
Reflection is also known as everyday process. There are various kinds of reflection which we face on day to day basis, for instance: How was the day? Good and Bad experiences? How do I feel about it? There is no such formula to solve these question marks but it just happens in the normal life. Reflection is the best way to tackle the problems or to deal with the issues. Reflection is two way process, for instance sharing an ideas with others and same contributing in the same.
According to JTCOBB (2009), the process of transforming information and experiences into knowledge is known as Learning. We can relate this definition with our dissertation experience where we are grabbing the knowledge which will be profitable in our future.
The report consists of four different parts, for instance the first part illustrates the recollection of the experiences. Every human being learns something on day to day basis. Same concept is implemented while make the Applied Management Project and Reflective Analysis Report. The experiences have been demonstrated in report are related to group members, personal learning and the involvement of university staff in accomplishing the project.
The different models have been used to explain the concept of learning, for an instance I had used the four stage model, which is related to different phases of dissertation. According to Gibbs (1988), reflection is the approach of describing the situation, feelings and evaluating the experience. There are six different stages in Gibbs reflective cycle and I had related same on the process of dissertation.
I had also mentioned the five key lessons, which I got during the time of dissertation. These lessons will help me in the future practice. Finally the report is ended with conclusion and references. As per my personal perspective reflection analysis is the best approach to know our weaknesses and strengths.
Recollection of experiences
As we all finished with our first semester, ever body was waiting for the day to start there dissertation. The dissertation classes were scheduled on 15-june-09 till 19-june-09. These five days were compulsory for all the students. Many students had planned to do dissertation in their home countries. I was waiting for this day as international office informed us that we can work full time after the submission.
The dissertation classes were held in University of Bedfordshire, Luton campus. The faculty divided the students into groups according to the streams. It was a good time because everybody knows that we are not going to sit together again. On the very first day the seminar class was full packed.
The classes were started on 15-june-09 which was same for all the streams. It was a long day but the curiosity was about the dissertation topic so everybody waited till end of the session. Vincent Ong and Peter Patrick were the module leaders. They introduce all about the dissertation and had distributed handbooks to all of us. We all were doing general discussion with module tutors. At the end of session Rob Carman had discussed about the Reflection. He explained us very well.
At last Vincent Ong told us to make the groups of six students. I was thinking to join some international group where I will get more exposure than joining the students from the same country. But there was no such group left, therefore I joined the previous group of semester one. The module tutors had told to appoint the group leader for the selection of topic.
Our topic was "Export Led Growth and to evaluate export promotion programmes of a country of our choice". It is really an interesting topic as Exports and Imports are helping the countries to improve the relations and also to improve the economies. Exports are the biggest support for Asian and other developing countries. We all had discussed the tentative structure of report in the class.
It was my first time experience of doing Applied Management Project so I was nervous about it. But my group mates were supportive and cooperative. We finished the day with some discussions for the project.
Today we were having presentation on library resources. Most of the students were not aware of them; hence it was very important for everybody to know about it. Business school staff told us about the importance of keywords. This is the most important part of doing dissertation.
Keywords make the task easy and efficient. The faculty had demonstrated the use of e-journals and e-books. I was amazed as we got lot of information in our library resources. These things made me confident and boost my energy to achieve the good results. Tutors told us to go through some articles and come back with quires for the next day.
In the beginning of third day everybody was ready with the questions and queries. It was an interesting and productive day as I personally grab important tips from the tutors and group mates. The tutors were helping us out for the keywords. Our group had started with literature review which I believe was the toughest part of the report. The business school staffs were putting more attention of students to maintain diary entries.
As per my perspective it was a good approach of diary entries as it keeps an individual aligned with the task. It had really helped me during my dissertation. I was maintaining by putting everyday experiences, learning and had maintained the list of references. The management had arranged five tutors for five different groups and we were free to discuss about the topic with all of them. I am thankful to the university staff that helped us in the dissertation classes.
Today our group had started with aims and objectives. It was again a discussion session and tutors told us to discuss the issues within the groups. It was a good idea because everybody had gone through some of the journals. I was confused with the literature review therefore my group mates helped me out for the same. As it was a secondary research we were asked to emphasize on journals, books and magazines. They were against Wikipedia which I believe is right. The information given on Wikipedia is sometimes fake and anybody can edit their views, therefore we were asked to avoid the use of Wikipedia. This was the summary of fourth day.
The last day of our dissertation classes was bit sad as everybody was going to be split. Many of students were going to their home countries for doing Applied Management Project. I had left with three of my group mates. We shared our email ids for the further conversation about the project. The learning support tutor had given important tips for the report writing.
Prof.Brain finally told us about the plagiarism. He had explained us the previous case and his personal experience when student gives excuses about plagiarism. At the end of the day students Vincent Ong had welcomed the students for quires. The students had clarified the doubts by module leaders and this was end of the session.
Personal feelings and Learning from the Experiences
As per my perspective the reflective report really helps an individual in expressing the feelings and learning experienced during the project. It is as opportunity for a person to know about the internal weaknesses which can be eliminated for the future prospects. Also it gives an opportunity to know other in terms of nature, style of working and cultures. This is the best way of knowing each other.
This report illustrates the assessment criteria for the reflective report for International Marketing course. This is an individual as well as integrated report which shows the contribution of work done during the Applied Management Project.
The main motif of the report is to explore our self in terms of expressing the experiences learnt during this time period. It is an overview which summarised the list of learning and experiences during dissertation. The below figure demonstrates different stages of reflection.
Source: http://www.sflqi.org.uk/online/materials/02%20Embedding%20SfL/03%20Developing%20LLN%20through%20Voc%20Courses%20(2.3)/04%20Develop%20LLN%20Voc%20Courses%20-%20Reflective%20Practice.pdf, Accessed on 02-Sep-09
The first stage shows initial step of reflective practice. Since I am learner, it is very important to know where I am good. I had related this model while doing the secondary research. As per my perspective, I had developed a good confidence level which I think is very important for an individual to survive in this competitive world.
The second stage is related to the personal skills. An individual should be aware that what skills they need, for instance the person is having lack of leadership quality or lack of communication, therefore it is very important to aware of these things and to rectify them as well. During the project I felt these weaknesses which had been improved at the end of dissertation.
The third stage is about implementing and monitoring. This stage was to start writing the report and to monitor the things going around. In this stage I had found my group mates very helpful and supportive. The university resources really had really helped out in doing the relevant research.
The final stage had been related to evaluate evidence. The things were very critical on this stage as the report was nearly finished. For me it was very important to go through the work done and to make it more presentable. I had faced many hurdles on this stage but with my hard work and concentration, I had finished it before time. During the project I had learnt lot of things which I believe will be useful in my professional life.
Reflective practice is not only to express the experiences; it also addressed the problems and hurdles faced while doing this report. As it was a group work but I had faced lot of ups and downs during the project. It is not very easy to co-ordinated with the individuals from different cultures as everybody is having different nature. My experienced was not very good with the group members as there was lack of co-ordination during this time period. I should have done little better if my group mates had joined me from the very first day.
Personal dynamics and learning from the experience
This was the good practice to express our self but as I had mentioned in the beginning the absenteeism of others had really affected my personal dynamics. In the initial stage I was dynamic and was expecting same from my group members. Unfortunately we were not able to sit together for the discussing and sharing ideas. This thing had distracted me from the target but later on after couple of weeks, my group mates had joined me, which made me happy and motivated to achieve the target on time.
It was a good experience while working with different people from different cultures. I had personally gained many things while doing the project which had built up the confidence and had boosted my energy for future prospects.
At the very early stage I was not very confidence on finding the key words for the research. But as the time moves I had learnt about the key words which I believe is very important for all the students. In the middle of my project the group mates were dynamic were helping each a lot. They were more supportive and helpful which made the project interesting and productive.
According to Paula Freire(2000), active and reflective process an good approach for learning. An individual is not only learning from talking and writing, it also learns things from events and experiences. I believed that this is true as I had learnt a lot from discussions and sharing ideas. The integration of action and reflection creates a new knowledge.
These both factors are very important to construct the knowledge. In the short reflection is the proper channel to work on critical analysis, solving problems, evaluating and creating meaning. I had related this with my dissertation course where we need to do analysis on the assigned topic. This leads to solve the problems and finally create the meaning for the same.
According to Lew and Schmidt (2007), self-reflection helps students to become better learners, which I believe is true as we came to know our strengths and weaknesses. I am thankful to my group as they had appreciated the work done by me and vice versa. It is very important to appreciate the work, because this thing boosts the person to perform well. The supervisor consultants had also helped us out to accomplish the report on time. They were very prompt and helpful in answering the queries.
Lessons for the future project
I was very important and interesting module which helped me and all of my group members to enhance the personal skills. As we know learning never ends therefore what I had learnt will definitely help me in the future. There were many ups and downs while doing the project but I personally feel that it was part of our work. While working in the team it is very important to listen others what they say. It is more important to understand each other which make the task easy and efficient. Initially I had faced problems with my group members but in the middle of my project it was started running smoothly. After graduation most of the students started seeking for the jobs, which gives the another opportunity to work in business environment. While working professionally an individual have to maintain and organise many things.
Reflection as discussed above is a process of evaluating, solving and generating the meaningful knowledge from our learning's. As we know that the countries are coming close due to globalisation and one should never know in which environment he/she is going to work. A person should mould according to the environment, the same thing I had learnt from the reflection analysis and during the dissertation.
While working in the team it is very important to observe about the context and to contribute the ideas for the same. No doubt while discussing there might be arguments among the group members which can be resolved internally. This also helps in the professional life where we face these things on day to day basis. In today's busy life one should aware to time management which helps the person in achieving the target on time. During the time of Applied Management Project I met different kind of people which had helped me for some good ideas. It built up the confidence if we meet more people, as everyone has different idea for one topic. Having more ideas tends to be more qualitative rather than quantitative.
Further I am going to highlight the five key lessons learnt during the Applied Management Project.
From the very beginning of our Maters degree, tutors had emphasized on working together as a team, which I believe is very important in this competitive world where the targets are very tough to achieve individually. Initially we were not able to co-ordinate with each other but later on it was fine which leads us to achieve the goal on time. According to Jonathan and Alan (2006), negotiating on different views where every individual comes across with different idea tends to work in a group which makes the task easier and achievable.
Communication plays an important role while working as a part of team or working individually. As I am an international student, it is very important for me to commute in the way that others do. Good communication resolves the solution as well as impresses the interviewer while attending the interviews. My personal thinking is that I had really enhanced my communication during this time period.
In the beginning of this module the tutors had emphasized us to maintain the diary entries. This thing really keeps the person on track and saves the time. I had maintained the diary for keeping the brief summary on day to day basis. This thing made me aware for the next day planning during Applied Management Project. Diary keeping had helped me in projecting the target of dissertation; therefore finally I had submitted the report on time.
As per my perspective the practice of reflective analysis helps an individual in knowing the weakness and strengths. It is all about the personal feelings and the observation done during the time of project. I personally believe that these lessons will help me in my professional life, where I have to face or interact with different people from different back grounds.
Conclusion has been made on the bases of lessons learnt during the project. Reflection makes the person more transparent which do not create miss understanding while working in the group. For the initial stage the tutors were telling us to work as a team which I believe is a good approach to achieve the target in the specific time.
Various models had been implemented in the report which relates to our day to day learning's. I personally believe that learning never stops therefore it is another turn of cycle which built our confidence to tackle the problem.