The Use of Reflective Journals to Stimulate Critical Thinking in the Academic Internship

Michael L. Arter, Lacey N. Wallace, Thomas L. Shaffer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Reflective journals have been widely accepted throughout various educational disciplines for many years as a means of enhancing experiential learning practices. Reflective journals allow for students to gain a better understanding of a given experience and explore the levels of critical thinking as they work through the understanding and learning processes. Critical thinking involves the logical progression from mere knowledge and understanding to the highest levels of synthesis and evaluation. The immediate study presents findings of the analyses of a series of sequential reflective journals presented over the course of a semester-long internship experience. Findings indicate that reflective journals are shown to facilitate progression through the levels of critical thinking as identified in Bloom’s taxonomy and promote a higher level of understanding and application of theoretical concepts to practical experiential learning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)140-156
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Criminal Justice Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Law


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