Reflective Commentary in Literature (Full Guide)

Reflective Commentary in Literature

Reflective Commentary in Literature
Reflective Commentary in Literature

Reflective commentary introduction

Your reflective commentary must begin with an introduction that includes a hook and a thesis statement, as is required for all essays. The goal of a ‘hook,’ or opening sentence, is to pique the interest of your listeners or readers right away. To keep your reader’s attention, you need to show off the most exciting parts of your story in the first paragraph.

You may want to revisit the first paragraph of this article and see if it piqued your interest. To summarize, the thesis statement sums up the essay’s central point, which in this case is a personal experience that had a substantial impact on you. Don’t give away too much information in the introduction; you don’t want your reader to lose interest in your story.

How do you write a reflective commentary in literature?

Reflective commentary meaning

There are two types of Reflective Commentaries: a brief (500 words for levels 1, 2, and 3; or 350 words at Foundation Level) piece of Writing in which you reflect on a specific assignment, or a longer piece of writing in which you reflect on your learning throughout the unit in general, regarding specific assignments (especially the final assignment).

There are a few things to keep in mind:

The origin of your idea should not be discussed.

If you’ve written something and discarded it, don’t discuss it.

Avoid summarizing your instructor’s reading of the story, poem, script, etc.

The work you’ve just submitted to your instructor should be the focus of your attention.

Make sure to focus on a few of the writing techniques you’ve employed in the piece. The list is long, so focus on the most important points.

What writing techniques you employed and why they were successful should be explained here.

As a result, don’t simply say, “I wrote my story in first-person,” and leave it at that. Rather than stating, “I chose to write my story in first-person narrative because I wanted the reader to feel as if the narrator was speaking directly to them.” In my story, this was critical because…

Examining into the techniques of writing:

When you talk about “writing techniques,” you’re referring to the methods you used in your creative piece. Here is a list of possible writing ways:

Writer’s techniques in fiction:

Character and similes; setting; metaphors; use of dialogue; structure; pacing; point of view; tense; use of flashback; voice; register; information reveal; sentence structure; use of free indirect discourse; psychic distance (e.g., a short sentence at the conclusion of a paragraph for impact).

Techniques in poetry:

Examples of stanzas are all imagery, word choice, tone and structure, point of view, sound (e.g., rhyme or assonance, alliteration), and rhythm.

Aside from these, there may be other techniques that are more relevant to your specific piece of creative work.

The Reflective Commentary’s sarcastic tone

There’s no need to use academic jargon because this isn’t a formal academic paper. As a self-reflective piece, use first-person pronouns.

Keep your voice polite and considered, but avoid being too casual or chatty. Attempting X and failing miserably is not an acceptable response. Instead, please explain why you thought it wasn’t working as a strategy.

If you’re talking about a book with a friend, don’t just say, “I loved this book” or “It was fantastic.” Instead, please explain what you liked about it and why you liked it. Give your point of view, but back it up with research.

Considering what you’ve learned from what you’ve read:

In the evaluation criteria, Contextual Knowledge receives some credit. To demonstrate that you’ve read other authors and engaged with them seriously as a reader and as a fellow writer is the goal of your final Research Committee (RC).

Refer to both the primary and secondary sources in your final RC (for example, literary works such as novels and poems as well as plays and films) if you’re writing in any of these media (e.g. books, articles, blogs, videos, etc. about the craft of writing).

As early as possible, use primary and secondary sources in the short response essays (RCs) you submit with each assignment.

This is far more impressive than merely stating that you were inspired to write about the same subject matter because of what you’ve learned from your reading in terms of craft.

As a result of reading Vicki Feaver’s poem “Ironing,” I decided to write my poem about ironing. This may be true, and you can include it in your writing journal; however, in your RC, focus on what you took away from your reading about the craft of writing poetry.

Remember that you only have 500 words for the short RCs, so don’t go overboard with your use of extended passages from your reading to illustrate your points.

In the end, this is the final version.

Final reflective commentary is more extended and requires you to reflect on the unit as a whole and specific assignments. To prepare your work for assessment, you should discuss your redrafting process, what you’ve changed, and why – and show that you’ve considered your tutor’s feedback.

Reflecting on redrafting:

Be clear and succinct. If you say “I rewrote Assignment 4 a lot” or “I cut out unnecessary words,” you’re not being honest. Detail your alterations and why they were beneficial.

Only use a few sentences or phrases from your work when discussing what you’ve changed:

It is not sufficient to provide a quotation from your assignment that illustrates the situation before and following the rewrite. Give an explanation of how and why you believe the alterations are an improvement.

In light of the remarks made by my tutor, I have to say:

If your tutor makes a suggestion or comment, you do not have to agree with everything your tutor says. However, you must demonstrate that you have considered your tutor’s feedback.

Similarly, don’t say you changed something because your tutor told you to only adjust it if you think it’s the right ament to make and explain why.

After writing your final reflective commentary on Assignment Five in Level 1, you may receive feedback on this piece of writing before you have even finished it. It is imperative that you revise your final RC and include comments about the feedback you received on Assignment Five, as well as the revision process you went through before you submit it for assessment.

You should turn in both your final, tutor-annotated reflective commentary and a redrafted version at the assessment time.


Make sure to include a bibliography/reference list (but don’t include anything you’ve not directly referred to) at the end of your reflective commentary, and use the Harvard referencing style.

Your word count does not include the Bibliography.

Why write reflective commentaries?:

An important requirement of the creative writing degree is to write reflective commentaries (RCs), which serve multiple purposes. We can use them to understand better what students are trying to accomplish in a piece of writing.

It is important to show students’ critical engagement with other writers and books, articles, and blogs about the craft of writing, which assists us in constructing better reading suggestions and understanding where our students are on their learning journey.

The most important thing about these assignments is that they force you to think “like a writer” by forcing you to engage with the writing craft and critically examine the quality of your work.

How do you write a reflective commentary in Cambridge?

Question 1 Your headteacher has asked you to produce a leaflet called Leaving Home. The leaflet will be aimed at older teenagers who are going to live in another town or city to go to university. 

(a) Write the text for the leaflet, using no more than 400 words. In your writing, give advice and guidance on how to manage living away from your family for the first time. [15]

 (b) Write a reflective commentary on your text, explaining how your linguistic choices contribute to fulfilling the task set by your headteacher. [10] 

Section B: Extended writing Answer one question. 


Question 2 

Your local newspaper is running a writing competition and you decide to enter. Write a descriptive piece called The Storm. In your writing, focus on sound, light and movement to help your reader imagine the scene. Write between 600 and 900 words. [25] 

OR Question 3

 In class, you have been discussing whether sending criminals to prison is an effective way of reducing crime. Write an article for your school magazine. In your writing, discuss the advantages and disadvantages of sending criminals to prison. Write between 600 and 900 words. [25]

 OR Question 4 

You have recently visited an exhibition of modern art at a museum. Write a review of the exhibition, which will be published on a website called Art Today. Write between 600 and 900 words. [25]

How do you end a reflective commentary?

In the conclusion of your reflection paper, you should summarize both the points you made throughout the piece and what you learned as a result in order to bring it all together. It’s a good idea to touch on the reasons and methods by which your outlook and conduct have evolved.

Take a look at how your character and abilities have changed as well, such as your ability to solve problems. Is it possible to draw conclusions about your approach to specific situations? What would you do differently in the future if you were in a similar situation?

What are the steps you have taken to make sure that you have retained all of the knowledge you gained from your experience? It’s essential to keep in mind that your tutor is expecting you to demonstrate excellent reflective skills.

What is the purpose of a reflective commentary?

Reflective commentary is a way to express your understanding of the writing process. You can show what you can do in an essay, but the reflective commentary shows what you know about your work.

How many sentences are in a commentary?

For every detailed sentence, you’ll need at least two sentences of commentary. Commentary should be twice as long as details, as a general guideline. If you don’t do this, your paper will be nothing more than a collection of facts.

What is the best information that a commentary should have?

At this point, you need to take note of the main points of the article. Title, author, publication date and genre are all included. These specifics must be included in the commentary’s introduction.

Take note of the date and time when the major work was first launched. An example of this would be mentioning in your introduction section that a specific piece of information was written as part of a larger collection and published at a specific time.

The author’s biography or the overall plot, on the other hand, should be avoided at all costs. As a result of its apparent emptiness, avoid them unless you think it’s absolutely necessary to support your position in the debate.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)

How do you do a commentary?

What is an example of a commentary?

How do you start an introduction to a commentary?

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