Critical Retrospective Reflection and Self Evaluation: Analytical Essay

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Table of contents

  1. Personal Experience
  2. Ideas That Resonates with My Experience
  3. My Critical Reflection Paper
  4. Major Paper Outline and Critical Annotated Bibliography
  5. Indigenous Leadership
  6. University and Leadership
  7. Conclusion

Personal Experience

I feel glad to write about reflection in the class of Challenges in Educational Leadership. At the very start I was happy that it will be interesting to make connections with this course from my previous leadership experience. This subject seems to be fulfilling my dream as a student in the Master of Education programme in the context of Leadership.

In the start of classes, I was struggling to adjust myself to this new World of Social Sciences as my previous study and teaching is related to Engineering and Technology.

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There is a lot of difference in teaching method and learning style in Canada and my home country India. In the beginning, I started reading material provided by our professor Dr. Denise.

The material provided by Professor was well organised and directly related to the topic for the respective class. I have also formed habit that I should see material on the internet for enriching my knowledge about a topic.

After gaining confidence and feeling at home in the class I started to participate in the discussion. Professor was very receptive to hear about our viewpoint and she always encouraged everyone to be an active participant in the discussion on any topic. My classmates were also participating in a very mature manner and class environment was always good.

There was always a mix of teaching, PowerPoint discussion by professor and healthy discussion.

There were disagreements also but at the end every issue was resolved amicably. This course has provided me the opportunity to exchange my ideas in the field of education with my Professor and other classmates. Due to the diverse background of students in my class it provided me an opportunity to know about the education of various countries.

Despite the diversity in the education system around the globe the education system has a unique goal to prepare the individual capable of facing the challenges of life. There is a concern for leaders in education to bring a holistic approach that prepares a person to become good citizen of a country in the particular and whole world in general. This is era of Globalisation and it has an impact on the education system to, there is a need of change, but it should not be at the cost of Ethics and Values being totally compromised.

The Master of Education program at Brock has a focus on equity, Social Justice, inclusiveness and in this age of change these values are important. Thus, there is an opportunity to learn about various issues related to Education, leadership in education and social issues related to an organisation. The various things learned in this course can be incorporated when I will go back to the teaching profession. One also learns from participation in various group assignments.

Ideas That Resonates with My Experience

There are few ideas that deeply resonate with me and I think discussing these ideas is very necessary. There was a topic on Transformative Leadership that says that social transformation cannot occur without education. The words like equity, social justice and democracy are part and parcel of Transformative Leadership. Transformative leadership must be critical of education, it should look on the conditions to live and it must be capable to change it. This type of Leadership has three important factors -the organisation. The leader. The intention and Leader should be capable to touch the souls of persons in such a way that it can raise their consciousness level (Shields,2010). In this reading, it is important to see that you need to uphold the idea of democracy. All the stakeholders should have a say in decision making only then one can say that everyone is a part of system. I may be implementing this philosophy of social justice in my previous experience unconsciously, but in future, I will try to implement this philosophy in more precise and effective manner.

In the changing social context, the leaders in education have many theories like transformational, transformative, democratic, authoritarian, transactional and distributed. The role of Leaders is to provide an environment that can address to the needs of rapidly changing population of students. Culturally Responsive Leadership can provide the context and framework to the leaders. There are various issues to be addressed under social justice leadership like Gender, race, ethnicity, class, sexual orientation and other hidden factors. In order to address the issue related to the needs of diverse backgrounds, students leaders are supposed to think differently about culture. Educational leaders should see culture as active force to change social, political and economic contexts (Lopez,2015).

As an international student, I think that there is a need to embrace cultural change so that everybody should have belongingness to the system. There need to talk about composite culture and try to minimise the use of terms like dominant culture, subculture or counterculture. Every culture has something good as well as common with other cultures thus these kinds of elements of culture can be incorporated at any level of curriculum.

My Critical Reflection Paper

I think it is necessary to discuss about a paper on Critical Reflection. It was on the topic of Transformative Leadership in Education: A Changing Scenario. I was not well Versed with this idea that how to write paper in Social Sciences. Secondly, I was not having enough practice how to write in APA style. I have chosen the topic of my taste and was successful in collecting research papers related to this topic. I was earlier having the habit of writing the full paper on a notebook and then to type it. But my young age classmates gave me the suggestion to directly type paper with handling various sources on a computer desktop. I was apprehensive that there may be a problem of uniformity in the structure of paper and there may be chances of error in the copy and paste system. But I thought let us change with time and follow new practices. I may be able to save some time but later those things regarding the structure and copy-paste error came in picture. I feel obliged to my professor Dr. Denise told me these issues and advised me to take help of AET Mr. Kenneth Smith. But I was totally disturbed and felt guilt inside about this issue. After that Mr. Kenneth spend a lot more time but still paper was not up to expectation. Then we came to the conclusion that it is difficult to correct fully when once something goes wrong.

Major Paper Outline and Critical Annotated Bibliography

I too have written this paper before the feedback for a previous paper on Critical Reflection has come. I and Mr. Kenneth Smith have tried our best, but this paper outcome met with same result. I feel obliged to my professor Dr. Denise and Mr. Kenneth Smith that they advised that it is past, leave it and move ahead. They told me that I can improve in the future and it helped me regain my confidence. The idea to write about this is that there are many issues related to any course. The persons who come from engineering and science backgrounds they take time to adopt practices prevalent in social sciences. I have missed July session classes on account of visa issues, so many basic things were missed on that account.

Indigenous Leadership

I was given the topic of Indigenous Leadership along with three other members to present in the form of PowerPoint Presentation. Though there is not much literature about the topic available but as a group we were successful to make it meaningful and interesting.

We begin by acknowledging that the land on which we gather is the traditional territory of the Anishinaabeg and Haudenosaunee peoples. we started by acknowledging the Indigenous people because it is their territory. It was seen that they are the growing population in Canada, to everybody’s surprise it grew by 42.5% between 2006-2016.If we see about 44% were under the age of 25 in 2016 as the youngest population in Canada. Thus, school is the place where these people can study with other populations. There need be the integration of these people in modern system through a feeling of respect for each other. Indigenous People Value Knowledge obtained through direct experience in the natural world. Thus, we can learn environment-friendly aspects from these people. We need that our leaders should make Indigenous people integral part of our evolving global community There should be less focus on Dominant culture whereas leaders should put more emphasis on composite culture. Canada is having a population with diverse backgrounds hence it is relevant to put more emphasis on Composite Culture.

It becomes clear that the western system of education is only150 years old whereas aboriginal people's education is thousand years old. Thus, there may be much more to learn from aboriginal people. Western education system put emphasis on whereas the aboriginal people put emphasis on the survival of the community. (Cassidy & Marsden2009).

The leadership of Indigenous people has rich foundation with elements of cohesion. Their way of looking at life is not motivated by material orientation. Their way of teaching is in the form of stories passed from generation to generation. Leaders should take along Indigenous people in government structure, land management, health care, education, housing etc. On the other hand, Indigenous people should embrace many aspects of modernity in various fields like Education, technology and other changes which are Global in nature. (Benham & Murakami2010)

This topic has taken the attention of everybody in the class. There was a good discussion in the class about aboriginal people not of Canada but in other countries New Zeeland and India. It was strongly emphasised by everybody that there is a need to apply inclusiveness in this area.

University and Leadership

In The end I would like to say about the leadership issues in the university. The problem of leadership has many dimensions. No doubt the students these days are treated as commodities but still university as an organisation can not be compared to any other organisation. The tragedy of the present era system is profit orientation which can not be directly applicable to universities. On another side there is a talk of automation and robotics. Where so many educated people will be absorbed if there will be less jobs. Academic leaders can not behave like managers of companies (Black,2015). Women leaders too are facing tough tasks when it comes to administration. Our professor also has many a times difficulties she faced as Vice Principal. Even when my wife was chair of the department in India for three years not only, she even myself has passed through a difficult phase.


In conclusion, I would like to thank my professor Dr. Denise who was always a source of inspiration. She was enabled to provide us a platform where we can express our ideas freely. I am thankful to Mr. Kenneth Smith who was ever ready to help me when I was struggling with my assignments. My class fellows despite from different backgrounds were always supportive and caring. According to me there so many things to learn in class that even if we can focus on one only like say Equitable Leadership it can transform our life. I hope that my leadership in higher education after finishing this course will be enriched and illuminated. This subject if taken seriously will not make you good education leaders but good human beings also. In the end, I wish to say that it was a good experience to participate as a student at the age of 50 years.

  1. Benham, M, & Murakami, R (2010) Engaging in educational leadership: the generosity of spirit International Journal of Leadership in Education,13(1),77-91.
  2. Black, S (2015). Qualities of Effective Leadership in Higher Education. Open Journal of Leadership.04.54-66.
  3. Cassidy, W; Marsden, D (2009) Aboriginal 'Ways of Being': Educational Leaders, Students and Traditional Aboriginal Knowledge Values and Ethics in Educational Administration,1-8.
  4. Lopez, A. E. (2015). Navigating cultural borders in diverse contexts: building capacity through culturally responsive leadership and critical praxis, Multicultural Education Review, 7(3)171-184 Shields, C (2010) Transformative Leadership: Working for Equity in Diverse Contexts, Educational Administration Quarterly,4(4),558-589.
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