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    Char Paul, Psychology and Statistics Tutor (B.Psych.Hons;Grad Cert Tertiary Teaching;TESOL) Mooroobool, Cairns m: 0449 252 438 psychnstatstutor at outlook
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    Psychology and Statistics blog posts and resources for students of the social sciences


Reflective Essay Pointers: Developing your professional voice

It is always great to see a reflective essay as an assessment piece. Very real world.

Developing Your Reflective Writing Voice

Throughout the essay you are making reference to your personal views, feelings, behaviours and decisions. It is critical that you link this lived experience to literature (i.e., start with class notes and assigned journal readings).

In this way, your reflections and links to research help you to be aware of what you believe, why and your reasons for taking a particular viewpoint (or carrying out an action).


You become much more transparent to yourself, as well as others. And that helps you to develop as a professional in terms of communication, representation, and networking resources and information.

Job ready graduates require confidence and competence in handling large amounts of new data, and then critically analysing information to apply with care plans/policies/projects/interventions etc. Your ability to cognitively and emotionally reflect will hone your professional skills to meet community and personal needs.

Reflection on Structure

The reflective essay follows a similar structure to a descriptive or critical essay (Intro, Body and Conclusion). The difference is in the ability to use 1st and 2nd person pronouns in your writing~ yah!
me, my, I, our and we are go.

Attend to the word count, which will be noted in your subject outline for that assignment. Be aware that sometimes your lecturer or tutor will provide you with an Outline, perhaps even with a word count (it does happen ~:-) So check emails, Blackboard and word of mouth.

Here is a structure that is easy to expand or compress depending on your content needs:

1500 words: Critical Essay

[n.b. 1 page = 250 words]

Introduction: 250w

  • Open the topic
  • Define key words
  • Highlight models/theories/conclusions and research methods (that will be fleshed out in the Body)
  • This critical essay [will demonstrate that] …………….
    First, ……………. presented. Second, ……………… discussed.
    Next, ………. will be detailed. Finally a conclusion will [summarise that which came before]

Body (1000 words or 333 words per Point)

  • Point 1: define, highlight key research conclusions and methods
  • Point 2: rinse and repeat with regards to Point 1
  • Point 3: ditto with regards to Points 1 and 2

Conclusion (250 words)

Remind the Reader what you have told them, and the interesting or pertinent highlights across the literature you have critically reviewed.

Are there gaps in your understanding? Are there gaps for current models/theories/conclusions/research methods? Can you make/note others recommendations for future research/critical reflection in this field?

Tell the Reader who will benefit from more research/critical reflection in this field.

APA Formatting

Use APA formatting from your Outline or First Draft stages:

  • Your paper will look professional
  • Standardisation –> the assignment looking less confusing
  • You get practice –> saves Time = More Life!
  • Recognising professional literature = ‘Knowing the club signs’
  • You will write a better argument
  • You will meet the word count effortlessly

I suggest that you create a separate document for References, to that you can toggle between windows rather than scrolling your Drafts. Leaving the polished formatting to last on my References list, I cut and paste all the details alphabetically (inc. a link where relevant).

Take Away …

Use an Outline, plot your word count, apply APA formatting from the get-go, and challenge your considerations of yourself, the world and your learning experience at uni.

Share how it goes for you in a Comment below~






Apply Your Psychology Learning: Example, Pallet Places Cairns

A brilliant way to deepen your psychology and statistic learnings, is to Apply your skills.

For example, I volunteer in my community in Cairns to enhance recycling and sustainability efforts. Weekly I get several calls and emails from residents wanting to source pallets for home projects.

I needed a way to decrease my time answering calls and emails, whilst enabling people to know about free pallet places in the city. Also, I saw an opportunity for fundraising and approached the Cairns Turtle Rehab Centre about accepting donations from those visiting the webpage. And, the activity would provide my home based tutoring biz with exposure, as I am the sponsor of the page. Winfinity!

pallet places cairns tutor initiative graduate skills

Some of the skills that I drew on included; ethical planning and organisation, marketing and UX, visual design and  webpage navigation, and community networking. In terms of demonstrating my graduate skills, I was proactive, took the initiative, saw a gap in community needs and problem-solved an option to it, displayed my leadership capacities and an ability to be self-motivated.

To level up my application of statistical skills, I will review the stats for the site every 6 months (as I am more than a bit busy ~:-) Later, when the not-for-profit volunteer crew have less on their plate (lol!), I will chat with them about analysing donations raised via the site. At the moment I simply link to their donation page.



Cairns Psychology and Statistics Tutor

I’ve updated my local flier for psychology and statistics students.

Workshops for a tight budget, free homework session times and an economical hourly rate (I’ve kept it the same for a decade).

Apologies for the blurred image, I tried several settings and resizings, such is WordPress life at the mo.

The free skype on weekday mornings is open to all, so if the timezone suits for you ~:-) message or phone in: psychnstatstutor

Now to make a video~

psychology and statsistics tutor Cairns



Study Buddy Notes eNewsletter for August is Out!

The latest edition of my Study Buddy Notes newsletter is published. ‘Get It Done’ resources for your psychology and statistics classes are included.

Time management is a key issue for 21st Century students coordinating their studies with work and home life. Keeping a course learning journal can enhance your organisational and time commitment skills. It’s as simple as adapting some of the bullet journal tips and trix out there to suit your psych n stats subject choices.

Critical reflective writing to create organisational and monitoring systems, as well as revision notes will develop your Academic Writing Voice. Fun study skills aids are included to enhance the function of your study space, motivate you to Get Stuff Done, and to enrich your writing.

I also included a brief note on the Chi Square distribution. Best to drip feed stats revision ~:-) Have a a look at the curve, note its similarities and differences to the Normal Distribution. Can you see why when we would use the Chi distribution? (hint: what level of measurement can be demonstrated on such a curve?).

Share and Enjoy~

study buddy notes psychology and statistics newsletter




Nursing Student Testimonial

I have been very fortunate to have Char as my tutor while in my last year of a online bachelor of nursing degree.

I struggled with writing assignments and Char was very quick to discover what the issues were and provided great tutoring and strategies that helped enormously.

I wished I had discovered Char a lot sooner. Char is also extremely flexible and very quick at responding to any questions or concerns.

~ TB Qld

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