How to Write a Reflective Essay

A reflective essay presents the personal opinion of the author on various subjects, events and so on. This means that this is a perfect way for a person to express themselves: their beliefs and viewpoints. In other words, a reflective essay is about providing a personal opinion about an object or phenomena.

The style of writing involved with reflective essays are a bit different from other essays. Perhaps, it has a lot in common with standard book or movie reviews. A reflective essay does not need special evidence to prove the author’s opinion, though, as presenting the personal opinion of the writer is itself enough.

Steps to Write a Reflective Essay

  1. Present your topic in the introduction.
    Usually, your professor or instructor gives you a particular topic to write your reflective essay on. This can be a movie or a book review, your opinion towards a new governmental policy, an economic crisis, a culture event, etc. Your first task is simply to present this topic to your readers and in your thesis statement write the main idea that will be supported in your essay.
  2. Write your body paragraphs.
    Here is your main platform for sharing your thoughts about a subject of your essay. Say why you like it or not, what is good and bad about it – feel free to show your real thinking on the topic. It is recommended to write three body paragraphs, but if you have more thoughts on the subject and find them important enough to share – write more!
  3. Conclude our essay.
    Sum up all of your thoughts mentioned in the body paragraphs. Restate your main idea about the subject of discussion and write an afterthought sentence to keep your readers interested in your presented topic.
  4. Revise your essay.
    You may ask your classmates or other people to check your essay for spelling or syntactical mistakes. Of course, you can do it alone too, but quite often students can’t find even obvious errors in their own text. Don’t skip this step before submitting your essay. Sometimes the proper grammar and tone of writing are as important as the essay’s content.

Useful Tips for Reflective Essay Writing

  • It is highly recommended to use first person narration, as it indicates that you’re writing your personal opinion. For instance, you may use “I liked”, “The best part of the movie for me is…”, “I didn’t like…” etc.
  • Don’t be afraid to state your opinion even if it is totally different from popular belief. But to make your thoughts sound more convincing, provide needed support for them within your body paragraphs.
  • One more tip we want to give students in writing reflective essays is to pay attention to the requirements given by their professors. There’s no need to write more words than you were told, as well as there’s no need to use too academic of a writing style (if you’re not writing about some scientific problem, of course).

Now you know the main rules and tips for reflective essay writing. To have a clearer understanding how the paper should be written, check out our reflective essay examples.

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