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Posted: February 12th, 2024

Reflection plays a pivotal role in the development of professional skills

Reflection plays a pivotal role in the development of professional skills, particularly in fields like diagnostic radiography. It serves as a bridge between theoretical knowledge and practical application, facilitating the transition from novice to adept practitioner. By engaging in reflective practices, individuals gain deeper insights into their experiences, enhance self-awareness, identify strengths and weaknesses, and pave the way for personal and professional growth.

In the realm of healthcare, including diagnostic radiography, reflection is not just a passive activity but an active process that enables healthcare professionals to gain a deeper understanding of their interactions with patients and their clinical practice. Johns (2005) emphasizes that reflection is an ongoing process that aids in developing a profound comprehension of experiences encountered in the healthcare setting.

In the context of radiography education, reflective learning holds significant importance. Hamilton (2010) underscores the role of writing tasks in promoting and monitoring students’ reflective learning. These tasks encourage students to critically examine their experiences, understand their thought processes, and identify areas for improvement.

Several models have been developed to guide the process of reflection, among which Johns Model of Reflection stands out. This model comprises five key stages: description of the experience, reflection, consideration of influencing factors, exploration of alternative actions, and identification of learning outcomes. It provides a structured framework for individuals to analyze their experiences systematically and derive meaningful insights (Johns, 2005).

A practical illustration of the reflective process can be seen in the description of a staged assessment conducted by a radiography student. Before undertaking the assessment, the student meticulously prepared by observing experienced radiographers and familiarizing themselves with the procedure and protocols. However, during the assessment, they experienced a moment of self-doubt when they perceived the radiographer’s scrutiny. Despite this initial setback, the student successfully completed the assessment, receiving positive feedback from the supervising radiographer.

Following the staged assessment, the student engaged in reflective analysis, considering their thoughts, feelings, and actions throughout the process. They acknowledged experiencing nervousness and anxiety but recognized these emotions as natural elements of the learning process. By critically examining their performance and emotional responses, the student gained valuable insights into their strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement.

Drawing upon reflective frameworks such as Gibbs’ cycle and Boud et al.’s framework, the student evaluated their experience comprehensively. They recognized the importance of balancing analysis of knowledge and thoughts with the analysis of feelings, as suggested by Boud et al. (1985). Additionally, they emphasized the significance of acknowledging both positive and negative emotions to foster constructive reflection.

Furthermore, the student contemplated how they could have approached the assessment differently and identified areas for future development. They recognized the value of experience in building confidence and adapting to changing circumstances, highlighting the ongoing nature of reflective practice in their professional journey.

In conclusion, reflection serves as a cornerstone of professional development in diagnostic radiography and healthcare more broadly. By engaging in reflective practices, students and practitioners alike can gain deeper insights, enhance their skills, and ultimately deliver high-quality care to patients. As they navigate the complexities of clinical practice, reflective practitioners continually strive for self-improvement and excellence in their field.


Johns, C. (2005). Becoming a reflective practitioner. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.
Hamilton, J. (2010). Reflective learning in radiography education. Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, 41(3), 147-153.
Boud, D., Keogh, R., & Walker, D. (1985). Reflection: Turning experience into learning. New York: Routledge.

From the first term of my Diagnostic Radiography degree at Glasgow Caledonian University, I attended clinical placement for a total of 32 days until write this essay to gain experience and practice my imaging techniques that I learned in various imaging departments. The placement module provided me with a learning experience in a radiology department and helped to broaden my clinical skills in a variety of clinical environments. These 32 days was diverse between 3 different hospitals also in different imaging departments general x-ray, CT scan, ultra sound and MRI. I kept a reflective diary from the first day of my placement to help me record my feelings and thoughts on the examinations I was asked to perform, the varying patients I examined, the outcomes of these examinations and any problems or achievements I felt important in my time there. The most significant reflection, however, was in respect to my clinical staged assessments. I will be using this diary as a means to help me reflect on my experiences on this placement and on how I have developed both professionally and personally.

what is the reflective? {{21 Johns,Christopher 2005;}} state that “reflection is an active process that will enable me and other health care professionals to gain a deeper understanding of any experience with patients.
Why the reflective is important for radiographer student? Reflective learning is an important feature of many radiography courses. Writing tasks are used both to promote and monitor student reflective learning {{20 Hamilton,John 2010;}}
Before I start writing my reflective I found that there are several models have been developed to guide the process of reflection.. But I choose Johns Model of Reflection: This model has 5 stopping points which are:
• Description of the experience: describe the experience and what were the significant factors?
• Refection: what was I trying to achieve and what are the consequences?
• Influencing factors: what things like internal/external/knowledge affected my decision making?
• Could I have dealt with it better: what other choices did I have and what were those consequences?
• Learning: what will change because of this experience and how did I feel about the experience / how has this experience changed my ways of knowing
I feel this cycle allows analysis to make sense of the experience, it takes into account a sequence of feelings and emotions which play a part in a particular event and leads you to a conclusion where you can reflect upon the experience and what steps you would take if the situation happened again. I am asked to describe one staged assessments that I completed and my recollection of thoughts and feelings before, during and after the process.
Description of the experience
Because I was spending some days on the General Department where I would be performing this type of assessment that encourage me to do my assessment and also helped me to know the procedure and the protocol for each position.it was required to do three Assessment which are 2 form Shoulder, Vertebral column, Pelvis and Skull So I decide to do the C-spine so I kept watching the radiographer what they do exactly for more than 3 days just to make sure that I follow the hospital protocol. Also I thought it best to be after I had performed the examination many times and would be feeling confident.
So after three days I felt confident that I would be ready for this assessment and when I arrived to the hospital on my fourth day I told the member staff who is work in radiology department reception told me for any c-spine patient. after the lunch break one patient came to department. So, the radiographer calls me and asked me if I can do this exam for this patient. I hold the request and read it carefully. It was C-Spine and both hand from the first time I found it interesting because the patient was male and his age was 45 years only. This gives me more confidant because it was the first assessment for me and patient condition and movement looks good .

However, when I started the examination, I give the radiographer my assessment sheet the situation looks like an exam for me due to the radiographer stand in silent and keeping eye on me this took away some of my confidant.
• Refection: what was I trying to achieve and what are the consequences
Before I called the patient I checked the request card and the patient’s history on the hospital information system (HIS) to check for any previous history and corresponding images, I washed my hands and I prepared the machines when I call the patient I introduce myself for him as international student radiographer and today I will do the x-ray for him and I am supervised all the time by the radiographer who is with us on the room the patient agreed after that I ask him to confirm his name, date of birth and address next, while I am looking for his information on the request card then, I explained to him what I am going to do during the examination. fortunately, the patient was very kind and co-operative with me .so I started to ask him to change his clothes in changing room just on the top and wear a hospital gone just to make sure there is no anything can affect the image quality such as necklace or anything in his clothes. The C-Spine x-ray procedure was carried out routinely as an, antero-posterior and Lateral views, Next, the patient came out and orientated him to stand facing the tube and his nick touching the cassette and his chin slightly up his shoulder relaxed down without movement the distance between the tube and the cassette was 100 cm I used factors 63 KV and 2.8 mAs then I forget to clean the cassette after used it . for the lateral view the patient stand his left side and his nick from his left side touching the cassette and his chin up his shoulder relaxed down as possible as he can without movement the distance between the tube and the cassette was 180 cm I used factors 77 KV and 2.8 mAs. The resulting image for AP and Lateral was an acceptable diagnostic image. the patient was very co-operative and aware of the situation around him which made it easier for him to understand and carry out the instructions I was giving him. Everything went smoothly The radiographer was pleased with my technique and anatomy knowledge and I received an excellent feedback for assessment mark from the radiographer with small minor and although I was relieved that it was over I still felt pleased with myself that I had carried out the C-Spine x-ray to a high level. I am thankful however that I kept my reflective diary on this occasion as everything happened so quickly and not to the plan that I anticipated that I benefit from reading my emotional conflicts that I experienced at a later date. This feeling is reinforced by Schön (1987) who argued that reflection is not a simple process and that practitioners need coaching and require the use of reflective diaries as tools for dealing with practice problems.


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