IMPROVING LEARNING ENVIRONMENT AT DIFFERENT ACADEMIC LEVELS THROUGHOUT GUIDED WEEKLY REFLECTION PAPERS
In recent years, the social and educational changes call for an active and reflective student-centred learning premised on the need to train students intellectually, by providing them the theoretical knowledge specific to each subject, and in terms of practical competences and abilities, aspects which are highly valued by society and employers. Bearing in mind that education should be based on effective and practical long-term learning, one of our priorities has been to make a reflexion on our own teaching praxis, to review and validate our methods, and to introduce the changes deemed necessary.
For that reason, our team of educational innovation started-up, some years ago, an innovative teaching experience based on “reflective diaries”. The methodology has been applied in diverse teaching areas and continuously evaluated and reviewed to diversify the initial methodology. This lead us to design a more flexible and valuable tool called “Guided Weekly Reflection Papers” (GWRP) which gives us the opportunity to introduce the students in a process of more active and participative learning, and motivates and encourages them to achieve more significant and reflective knowledge and generates interest in emergent topics.
Our University collaborates frequently with different teachers belonging to secondary schools in our geographical area where the students come to our University from. From our point of view as University teachers will be really interesting to help them to acquire this reflective practice before arriving to the University. Therefore our Innovative Educational group has proposed to some of those teachers the implementation of this GWRP tool in the secondary school adapting this method to the special characteristics of the educational environment at this level.
The aim of this paper is to present the adaptation of this educational method for the first time as a valuable strategy for improving the learning environment not only at university level but also in secondary schools, and as a contribution to the integral formation and meaningful learning of the students.