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The Significance of Self-Reflection in Professional Development

Self-Reflection is essential is creating self awareness regarding one’s own skills and knowledge that will help him establish himself in a professional environment. During the academic career, the person goes through the learning phase. In the initial learning phases, he only learns basic educational things and languages (Boud, Keogh and Walker 2013). However, in the latter learning phase (higher education), the person only goes through the specific subject he is enrolled in (e.g. engineering, medical sciences, literature, etc.). This is the phase where he gathers significant amount of technical knowledge on the subject. Moreover, in some technical subjects, he is also given practical lessons that he needs to implement in real scenarios in professional life. Simply learning these and then directly entering into a professional environment is not possible without self-reflection (Moon 2013). Self-reflection helps the person to take a note regarding everything he has learnt throughout his academic career. This in turn helps him to identify whether he actually learnt the concepts or only the lesson documents that were provided to him during his career. If this is done successfully, the person will also automatically learn about his strengths and weaknesses in his academics (Savery 2015). He will be able to use his strengths to make himself a contender for a particular job in the professional field whereas he will also need to solve his weaknesses in order to make himself more competitive and competent for a particular job that the other people trying to earn the same job.

Throughout my academic career, I have always been a very eager and competent learner who is deeply interested in learning different concepts and technical details rather than just reading through the lines and the notes given by the lecturers. As a student, I was always eager to know the reasons behind a particular concept or how a concept worked with practical proof. Moreover, I also used works of numerous researchers as references for my studies and these helped me gather significant technical knowledge. In addition, these qualities of mine and my eagerness to learn earned me high spots in every academic institution I was part of including school, college and university. I believe these are my strengths that will help me overcome any challenges that may come towards me during performing a job in my professional career. I have summarized the following points that I believe reflect my competency for gaining a suitable job in any esteemed institution that works within the field of my study.

Strengths and Weaknesses

During my academic course, I came across the “Your Career and You” exercises that have helped me lot in identifying the main points of my technical skills and attributes that need to be highlighted while applying for the job that I desire. These exercises cover almost all the attributes that must be present in an individual for gaining a suitable job within the field of his study. I found the points discussed below in the same exercise and that has helped me a lot to understand my strengths that will be highly helpful in the professional career.

Life Goals – My life goals include gaining professional employment in an esteemed organization where I will be able to apply my technical skills and knowledge in overcoming job challenges as well as further learn during the entire course of my professional career.

Past Goals Achieved – Previously, before reaching the age for professional career, I had some personal goals that I fulfilled throughout my academic career. In the initial years of my academic career, my goal was to be the topper in my class not only with just learning by heart but also exhibit skills for understanding concepts and applying them to solve problems. Again, during higher studies, my goal was to gain technical knowledge to enable me to work hard and practice different problems in a practical environment. I believe I have successfully achieved my goals as I came out with flying colours from my university.

Importance of Career and Work – To most of the people, career and work is mainly for earning bread for himself and his family. However, in addition to earning bread, I look towards career and work as an opportunity to learn and increase the knowledge base that has been formed during the academic career. I feel that challenging situations at work helps an individual to gain the courage to face any problems and solve those using suitable techniques even in personal life. Moreover, being successful in professional career also gives personal satisfaction that I value very highly.

Sense of Responsibility – I believe this is one of the most important attributes that is required in an individual in order to gain a respectable position in any job. About me, I feel I have a very good sense of responsibility and I will not leave my parts of duties unless they are completed successfully within time. Even in my academic career, I took responsible initiative to ensure that all my duties as well as my batch-mates’ duties are fulfilled within the time set by our teachers and lecturers.

Career Aspirations

Leadership – I feel I have good leadership skills as I take great pleasure to lead a group of colleagues in performing a particular job during a group venture. My eagerness to learn has also given me the attribute of explaining different concepts in a very simple way so that everyone can understand it. During my academic career, I led various teams that were involved in group ventures in projects and practical works.

Energy and Health – I believe energy and health are two important attributes that help an individual to work for long periods of time under stressful environment. I have previous experiences of working under these factors and I have fared reasonably well. I also try to keep myself fit so that I can dedicate myself to my work. Finally, I believe, Australia has a very good environment for keeping myself healthy and full of energy that will definitely help in my professional career.

I completed my higher studies in software engineering where I faced numerous challenging situations. In these situations, I needed to apply the attributes explained above and I was quite successful in that. For instance, during software development for practical learning, there were many situations where I faced significant challenges that could not be solved without sufficient conceptual knowledge and the ability to take risky steps. I faced these challenges and used my technical knowledge and skills as well as implemented my own steps from my conceptual knowledge to solve the challenges. Almost every time, I came up with the solutions successfully and as a result, I also earned sufficient praise from my supervisors who were pleased with the progress of my academic career. My eagerness to learn has also given me the attribute of explaining different concepts in a very simple way so that everyone can understand it. During my academic career, I led various teams that were involved in group ventures in projects and practical works. I also took responsible initiative to ensure that all my duties as well as my batch-mates’ duties are fulfilled within the time set by our teachers and lecturers.

As a part of self-reflection, I have identified some of my personal strengths that I believe will help me gain a suitable and challenging job in my professional career. My identified strengths are listed as follows.

Strong Technical Knowledge Base – This is one of my strengths that will help me overcome any challenging situation in my professional career. I have always been a very eager and competent learner who is deeply interested in learning different concepts and technical details rather than just reading through the lines and the notes given by the lecturers. My eagerness to learn earned me high spots in every academic institution I was part of including school, college and university. I believe this strength of mine will help me overcome any challenges that may come towards me during performing a job in my professional career.

Ability to Learn Quickly – Another important strength of mine is my ability to learn quickly from lessons as well as experiences of people surrounding me. In addition to an eager learner, I also learn and understand concepts very quickly. Also, I feel any human, younger or older can teach very important lessons and hence, I always try to learn from people around me and also try my best to help them in every possible way.

In addition to the strengths, I have also learnt about my major weakness where I need professional development. During learning the concept, I get carried out too much and lose the ability to find practical solutions to problems and instead, search for complex solutions. During my professional career, I will try my best to compensate this weakness and complete my professional duties successfully.

Self-Reflection is essential is creating self awareness regarding one’s own skills and knowledge that will help him establish himself in a professional environment. Throughout my academic career, I have always been a very eager and competent learner who is deeply interested in learning different concepts and technical details rather than just reading through the lines and the notes given by the lecturers. As a student, I was always eager to know the reasons behind a particular concept or how a concept worked with practical proof. As a part of self-reflection, I have identified some of my personal strengths that I believe will help me gain a suitable and challenging job in my professional career. In addition to the strengths, I have also learnt about my major weakness where I need professional development.

References

Boud, D., Keogh, R. and Walker, D. eds., 2013. Reflection: Turning experience into learning. Routledge.

Moon, J.A., 2013. Reflection in learning and professional development: Theory and practice. Routledge.

Reynolds, M., 2017. Organizing reflection. Routledge.

Savery, J.R., 2015. Overview of problem-based learning: Definitions and distinctions. Essential readings in problem-based learning: Exploring and extending the legacy of Howard S. Barrows, 9, pp.5-15.

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