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Capturing your thinking

How do we go about capturing our thinking?
© Coventry University. CC BY-NC 4.0
Now that we have considered the value of reflective practice in nursing, we go on to look at possible tools to help you capture your thinking.
You could simply record your log entries in a notebook, however there are many online tools and apps available (some of which are listed below) that you might prefer to use.

Your personal learning log

A learning log is a useful way of compiling your course notes, views and resources as you study. The aim is to regularly look back on what you have learned and articulate your thoughts and feelings about the experience.
Unlike the online portfolio, your learning log is informal and can be kept private. However, in the spirit of social learning, you’re encouraged to share as much of your work with your fellow learners as you feel comfortable doing.
You can record your log entries offline in a notebook or go digital with easy-to-use online tools (below) to build a more dynamic collection of resources and insight.

Build it with a blog

Blogging and journaling tools such as Blogger, Tumblr, Wix and WordPress can be updated regularly with text, images, videos, audio and more, so they’re ideal for keeping an engaging learning log.
You can usually choose to make blog posts public, keep them private or share them only with select people. It’s a great way to develop your understanding and share your work week by week.
FutureLearn has provided useful guidance on using blogging tools to support your reflective practice.

Take notes online

Online note-taking tools and apps act like digital notebooks, allowing you to edit, organise and share your notes flexibly.
They range in functionality from very simple tools, like Shrib, to those with more advanced features, like EverNote and Google Keep. If you’re a registered Coventry University student, you also have access to Microsoft OneNote as part of Office 365.
Some of these tools allow you to clip from websites, include images and collaborate with others to maintain a more comprehensive record of thoughts and information. How you use them is up to you.

Your task

  • Why else do you think keeping a learning log or portfolio could be useful?
  • Do you have experience using any of the tools that are mentioned?
  • Can you think of any other tools or apps that might be useful?
By following any of the links mentioned above, you will be taken to a third-party website where you may be asked to submit some information about yourself. Please make sure that you are familiar with the terms and conditions and privacy policy of the third-party website before submitting your information.
Whether you follow the links and submit your personal information or not, your course progress will not be affected.
© Coventry University. CC BY-NC 4.0
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