Below we offer an example of a thoughtful reflective essay that effectively and substantively capture the author's growth over time at California State University Channel Islands (CI). We suggest that you write your own essay before reading either of these models-then, having completed your first draft, read these over to consider areas in your own background that you have not yet addressed and which may be relevant to your growth as a reader, writer, or thinker.
Any reference to either of these essays must be correctly cited and attributed; failure to do so constitutes plagiarism and will result in a failing grade on the portfolio and possible other serious consequences as stated in the CI Code of Conduct.
Scroll down for more examples!
Sample Reflective Essay #2
Author: Nekisa Mahzad
I have been a student at California State University Channel Islands (CI) for 5 semesters, and over the course of my stay I have grown and learned more that I thought possible. I came to this school from Moorpark Community College already knowing that I wanted to be an English teacher; I had taken numerous English courses and though I knew exactly what I was headed for-was I ever wrong. Going through the English program has taught me so much more than stuff about literature and language, it has taught me how to be me. I have learned here how to write and express myself, how to think for myself, and how to find the answers to the things that I don't know. Most importantly I have learned how important literature and language are.
When I started at CI, I thought I was going to spend the next 3 years reading classics, discussing them and then writing about them. That was what I did in community college English courses, so I didn't think it would be much different here. On the surface, to an outsider, I am sure that this is what it appears that C.I. English majors do. In most all my classes I did read, discuss, and write papers; however, I quickly found out that that there was so much more to it. One specific experience I had while at C.I. really shows how integrated this learning is. Instead of writing a paper for my final project in Perspectives of Multicultural Literature (ENGL 449), I decided with a friend to venture to an Indian reservation and compare it to a book we read by Sherman Alexie. We had a great time and we learned so much more that we ever could have done from writing a paper. The opportunity to do that showed me that there are so many ways that one can learn that are both fun and educational.
The English courses also taught me how powerful the written word and language can be. Words tell so much more than a story. Stories tell about life and the human condition, they bring up the past and people and cultures that are long gone. Literature teaches about the self and the world surrounding the self. From these classes I learned about the world, its people and its history; through literature I learned how we as humans are all related. By writing about what we learn and/or what we believe, we are learning how to express ourselves.
I know that my ability to write and express my ideas, thoughts and knowledge has grown stronger each semester. I have always struggled to put my thoughts on paper in a manner that is coherent and correct according to assignments. I can remember being told numerous times in community college to "organize your thoughts" or "provide more support and examples". These are the things that I have worked on and improved over the past couple of years and I feel that my work shows this. The papers I wrote when I first started here at C.I. were bland and short. In these early papers, I would just restate what we learned in class and what I had found in my research. I did not formulate my own ideas and support them with the works of others. The classes I have taken the past couple semesters have really help me shed that bad habit and write better papers with better ideas. I have learned how to write various styles of papers in different forms and different fields. I feel confident that I could write a paper about most anything and know how to cite and format it properly.
There are a couple of things that I do feel I lack the confidence and skill to perform, and that is what I hope to gain from participating in Capstone. I am scared to teach because I don't know how to share my knowledge with others-students who may have no idea what I am talking about. I hope to learn more about how teachers share their knowledge as part of my Capstone project.
Want more examples?
View sample reflective essay #1
Visit CI's Student Writing Samples web page
Want to become a better writer?
CI's Student Writing web site has how-to videos, writing samples for different subjects, and support resources.
View CI's Student Writing site
Careers in English and Writing
The English program at California State University Channel Islands prepares students for a wide range of exciting and rewarding careers, including:
- English teacher
- Social media strategist
- Media production (film, TV, internet)
- Print and digital publishing
- Corporate communications
- Foreign service
- Human resources
- Foundations/non-profit management
Learn more about CI's English Program
Music is the reflection of what we did in the past that sometimes haunt us in order to reflect these activities. In this case, the essentials of music have been a relevant factor for enabling our personal life to improve our experiences and actions in the present day. The reason behind is that music is an interpretation of one’s expression or feelings towards other individual, scenario, and experience. The use of rhythm, music, and singing creates one artistic presentation that allows anybody listening to it can reflect their current activities. Whenever there is music, it basically has the capability to stimulate the senses of a person to try and reflect their personal values and core in order to improve their awareness.
Music changed my life because it provides a reminder of how we are going to change our life and well-being to become optimistic. There is a drive that enhances personal concept to improve awareness and conviction to become productive and competitive. The melody creates a new window to the soul of every individual to engage them in a reminiscing way from their past lives or activity. It makes me realize that there’s more chance to prove myself by becoming a productive individual in my own career and lifestyle. Music is a guide for myself to consider my aspirations of becoming a role model to other individuals by being aware of what is happening to my present activities that can guide myself for my future plans. Whenever I hear music, there are components that are indicated from the lyrics for me to move forward and try to adapt new things in order to improve my lifestyle.
The positive changes that music made into my life is all about the optimism that has been a relevant factor that improved the way that I partake my social and emotional well-being that is responsible for influencing positive thoughts and perspective. Whenever I hear music, it enhances my self-awareness to become more careful with all the future plans and roles that I am involved with in the near future. The result of improving my self-awareness process is important because when I hear music, I came to analyze my past actions to become a better person in the near future. Optimism decreases the ability to relieve anxious feelings because it generates a creative aspect of improving your personal values and perceptions with your recent actions.
Music mostly changes a person’s emotional well-being because the melodramatic approach of music always attempts to engage in a position where a person will need to consider their position, action, and value. With the process of music, it allows every individual to influence their cognitive values to integrate with their emotional well-being. The influence of music stimulates trust with your personal and professional conduct because it can elevate your ability to improve your knowledge, skill, and feelings. I realized that when you appreciate the changes applied by music, this means that you are ready to adjust to the new life and routine that affects your credibility and image with other individuals. Having the desire to change is important because it means that you accept most of your mistakes that are relevant to every person who wants to create a relevant transformation to their lifestyle as well as their lives in the future (White, 2015).
- White, Erika (2015). “Music History Primer: 3 Pioneering Female Songwriters of the ’60s | REBEAT Magazine”. Rebeatmag.com.