Reflective Practice and the Formative Annual Review Framework

These are the notes and links for a conversation about the Formative Annual Review (FAR) framework and Reflective Practice that I had with a group of MSU faculty.

Brief overview of FAR Framework

Formative Annual Review (FAR) is an active approach to annual review, allowing us to take control of our narratives, shape them, and to tell our stories in context. By engaging with this framework we are working on enacting the CPIL concept in our work and life.

3 main components guide our inquiry:

  • critical planning
  • reflective practice
  • context making

For the conversation today we’ll focus on the Reflective Practice component, taking some time to discuss, conduct and plan for our reflective practice. But first let’s talk through the framework…

Slides about FAR Framework

Some notes on reflective practice

Slideshow from the Reflective Practice COLA Workshop – This contains elements below on this page and several other components from a workshop on Reflective Practice I did for the MSU COLA Fellows program.

Key Quotes:

Reflective practice is “Thinking about one’s actions so as to engage in a process of continuous learning. – Donald Schon
 “Self-reflection is of key importance for many reasons: it enables you to become aware of your strengths and weaknesses, as well as to clarify your personal goals and aspirations” – Beronda Montgomery, Lessons from Plants (139)

“Walking is such a crucial part of it. I walk so much, I have my best ideas on walks. The best ideas in this book didn’t come in front of a computer screen, they came seven miles up a hill, when I get these flashes.” – Writer Tom Cox on his creative process

Prompts for Reflection:

  • What are ways that you already practice reflection in your personal or professional life?
  • What are the tools you use? Spaces you occupy? Time of day, etc.
  • when will you make time to reflect?
  • In what modalities will you reflect?
  • How will you record reflections when time is short? When you have plenty?
  • Will you reflect in public, private, both?

Next Steps:

Changing and developing habits is HARD

Reflective practice is personal—the challenge is to figure out what works for you and supports your learning 

Some ideas to get started and/or support your practice: 

  • 30 Daily prompts – some prompts I find helpful if feeling a need to mix up my reflection
  • Block 30 minutes a day in your calendar
  • Take a walk everyday at a certain time
  • Start a journal or a running Google doc to jot down ideas in

Some other Resources: