Study On Reflection And Use Of Radiography Nursing Essay

Reflection is an important and powerful strategy for the use of development in professional skills; as it enables the link between the practice and theoretical aspect of learning to help moving from a beginner to a skilled practitioner. Reflection should enhance self-awareness, identifying personal strengths and weakness as well as help in the improvement.

In the world of definitions and explanations, there are different professors, author, and editors e.t.c and their different knowledge of understanding.

Dewey defined reflective thought as ‘active, persistent, and careful consideration of any belief or supposed form of knowledge in the light of the grounds that support it and the further conclusions to which it tends’ (Dewey 1933: 118). He set out five phases or aspects.

1. Suggestions, in which the mind leaps forward to a possible solution.

2. An intellectualization of the difficulty or perplexity that has been felt (directly experienced) into a problem to be solved.

3. The use of one suggestion after another as a leading idea, or hypothesis, to initiate and guide observation and other operations in collection of factual material.

4. The mental elaboration of the idea, or supposition as an idea or supposition (reasoning, in the sense in which reasoning is a part, not the whole, of inference).

5. Testing the hypothesis by overt, or imaginative action

In every case of reflective activity, a person finds himself confronted with a given, present situation from which he has to arrive at, or conclude to, something that is not present. This process of arriving at an idea of what is absent on the basis of what is at hand is inference. What is present carries or bears the mind over to the idea and ultimately the acceptance of something else. (Dewey 1933

Donald Schön (1983) suggested that the capacity to reflect on action so as to engage in a process of continuous learning was one of the defining characteristics of professional practice. He argued that the model of professional training which he termed “Technical Rationality”-of charging students up with knowledge in training schools so that they could discharge when they entered the world of practice, perhaps more aptly termed a “battery” model-has never been a particularly good description of how professionals “think in action”, and is quite inappropriate to practice in a fast-changing world.

Goodman (1984, cited by jasper 2003 p9) suggests that there are three levels of reflection which you are likely to move through during your education. However it is not helpful to think that you are at level 1 in year 1, level 2 in year 2 e.t.c. which level you achieve will depend on your skill and ability and should not be restricted to the level which has the same number as your year of study.

Doing a general investigation on a word, a methodology, hypothesis, summary and conclusion on a laboratory practical would have being easier as I would have being confident enough to do a write up on what I did, should have done, and reasons why a certain error happened and how it could have being avoided. This is something that could be done as it has been done previously with my course at college. Writing a reflection on a work experience is different but similar to writing or doing an investigation on a laboratory practical, so the techniques of writing a laboratory practical can be used to write a reflection as well as the guidance notes posted on the blackboard.

The medical field had ran in my family right from my oldest sister to my older sister as Nurses and now to me as a Radiography (student)I didn’t choose to be a radiographer in order not to break the medical chain or because my sisters being nurses, but ever since I visited my oldest sister while she was on a work placement I saw other radiographers, how they operated the radiography machine in taking various x-rays; was breathe taken and wondered how the radiography machine makes use of its infrared without harming the human skin to get the image of the endo-skeleton. Since then I have being interested in the machines and in other get closer to it and find out how it works was to become its operator (radiographer).

Queen Mary Hospital, Sidcup was a marvellous place to work/experience what it is like to be a radiographer, as well as being much more hygienic and patience than I was; as there were lots of precautions done before and after taking an x-ray such as the use of disinfectants before and after dealing with a patient and the accurate use of the radiography machine which requires lots of concentration and patience because a slight mistake could cause a life or make the situation of the patient worse.

It was really nice meeting other radiography students but known and unknown, we were taken on a tour around the hospital by other senior radiography students then we were introduced to our various supervisors, my supervisor was a lovely lady who seem to be very experienced, she knew what she was doing and also what she was talking about, patient and confident.

The first week of the experience was very nerve racking and it was knackering, we were technically a full time working class radiographers (9am – 5pm) every day. I got used to the fatigue on the second week but was still nervous that I was going to make a mistake at some point while with a patient either theory wise or practical wise. With the help of the supervisor and the senior colleague I gained a little bit of confidence, was corrected before making and after making a mistake and was checked upon on a regular basis in order to be up to standard and produce distinctive results.

Before allowed use of the radiography machine we had to get use to the environments such as being like receptionists, calling out the patient’s names, checking their information and details making sure that it’s the right person; this was practically interesting because I got to meet different people with different characters. Then I was given the opportunity to work in the CT (computerised tomography) scan briefly, was thought the basics of the machine, what it scans the body for, how it detects the diseases and how it is maintained. This was time consuming and required a lot of patience. It was quite boring at this point. But came to realise that I was no longer interested in radiography because of the machines, but interested in it because I like to be of help in anyways I can to the people and community.

In the medical world mainly the National Health Services, UK there are various sections in each hospital, some hospitals specialised in something specific and some are specialised in everything, but a thorough medical check-up is not complete without some sort of scan which is where the radiographers and radiography comes in.

Radiography is the use of X-rays to view a non-uniformly composed material such as the human body. By utilizing the physical properties of the ray an image can be developed displaying clearly, areas of different density and composition.

A heterogeneous beam of X-rays is produced by an X-ray generator and is projected toward an object. According to the density and composition of the different areas of the object a proportion of X-rays are absorbed by the object. The X-rays that pass through are then captured behind the object by a detector (film sensitive to X-rays or a digital detector) which gives a 2D representation of all the structures superimposed on each other. In tomography, the X-ray source and detector move to blur out structures not in the focal plane. Computed tomography (CT scanning) is different to plain film tomography in that computer assisted reconstruction is used to generate a 3D representation of the scanned object/patient. Radiography was not only used on living being (medical reasons) also industrial purposes such as fitting shoes.

X-ray photons used for medical purposes are formed by an event involving an electron, while gamma ray photons are formed from an interaction with the nucleus of an atom. In general, medical radiography is done using X-rays formed in an X-ray tube. Nuclear medicine typically involves gamma rays.

The types of electromagnetic radiation of most interest to radiography are X-ray and gamma radiation. This radiation is much more energetic than the more familiar types such as radio waves and visible light. It is this relatively high energy which makes gamma rays useful in radiography but potentially hazardous to living organisms.

Gamma rays are indirectly ionizing radiation. A gamma ray passes through matter until it undergoes an interaction with an atomic particle, usually an electron. During this interaction, energy is transferred from the gamma ray to the electron, which is a directly ionizing particle. As a result of this energy transfer, the electron is liberated from the atom and proceeds to ionize matter by colliding with other electrons along its path. Other times, the passing gamma ray interferes with the orbit of the electron, and slows it, releasing energy but not becoming dislodged. The energy released is usually heat or another, weaker proton, and causes serious biological harm to the body such as skin cancer and other form of endo cancer.

Radiography is a very important technique in the medical world but also dangerous if not used correctly on a patient. Before using one of the machines we had to disinfect ourselves, tie up loose hair, cover the ones that couldn’t be tied up and wear protective clothes such as coveralls eye goggles and gloves. I was introduced to all the patients by my supervisor as a radiography student; some of them I took their x-ray with supervision and some I watched as theirs were taken and some were done with both my supervisor and I. the ones I did by myself with supervision I had to ask for their consent before doing anything on them some of them weren’t sure and some had no problem, for those who weren’t sure were the ones that was done with the supervisor and I; and for those who had no problem, I asked for their consent personally and was still feeling that in case the patient decide to take action against me I may be in danger of laws such as the right to self-determination in which adults have the right to determine what is done to their bodies and touching a person without consent is basically unlawful and can amount to trespass to them or, more rarely, a criminal assault Griffith, R., Tegnah, C. (2008) this made me really nervous and coming up with different thoughts of thing going wrong and might do something slightly wrong and end up becoming really disastrous. The analysis of the reflective process, the need to attend to feelings and attitudes (making use of positive feeling and then dealing with negative feeling) was apparent throughout and required self-awareness.

The relieving aspect of the experience was the fact that all the patients I dealt with, with or without supervision fully co-operated without any difficulty and technicality, as they didn’t have much choice to decline task I was going to do for them but to consent to the treatment because it was in their best interest; but they still had to be respected as patients and clients’ autonomy and their rights to decide whether or not to undergo any health care with use of medical equipments/machine intervention-even where a refusal may result in harm or death to themselves, unless a court of law orders to the contrary.

The other option I had was not to personally asked patients that were dealt with by me for their consents and carry on with my task at the risk actions taken against me. “Imposition of treatment upon a competent patient against their wishes may constitute inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment”. Such option might have been counterproductive and detrimental to my career in the invent that any of the patients decide to take legal action against me” (Tingle .J. and Cribb .A. 2007).

I was classified as a very good and hardworking student, who was always willing to work at all times but needed to adjust on certain aspects such as hygiene skills and patience i.e. doing things properly without rushing them through, which I did improve on eventually; didn’t get a few task done in the theoretical aspect but when it came to the practical aspect I was always willing to learn something new. Even in the practical I was still a bit shaking; but if I was to come back for another work placement and was told to do some if not most of the things I had done in my previous placement I believe there would be more care as I have gained more experience and knowledge of how to go about it. Reflection helps the practitioner to gain insight into self, be empowered to respond more effectively in similar situation in the future and realise your vision as a lived reality. In addition to that, reflection leads to learning certain skills and knowledge and development of attitudes and attributes effective to make positive difference to the client

To conclude, it has now become clear that reflection is a way to learn through experience and this helps the practitioner to gain insight or change his perception of himself or his practice. It is a good tool to describe, analyse and evaluate practice experience for future learning. Its major role in professional programme is learning but is also good for professional development and identifying learning needs. This essay has also made me to be aware of the factors that inhibit observation such as attention or its deficit, know-how, working condition and the need to know. It has made me to be aware of the fact that professional issues are normally composed of various important and co-relating issues.


There were lots issues faced while working at the hospital, mainly with the patients; most of the issues were to do with the reaction of people when it comes to the pronouncing of the names/surnames, some were just naturally mischievous and the rest were to do with unnecessary questions being asked and their slow rate of understand when explaining something to them. These issues were dealt with by just adapting to the environment as well as the different type of people that came; this has helped massively outside of the hospital.

Another issue was between me and my supervisor we did have a few misunderstanding when it came to getting work done properly and in time, been told off several times, embarrassed in front of other colleagues e.t.c but the only way out was to do what the supervisor wanted which was getting work done and up to standard as well as punctuality.

Issue between other colleagues and I; I made new friends tried to be social with everybody in class, never had any grudge against anybody but some did. Which I ignored and tried as much as possible to stay away from them because didn’t want anything hindering or standing between me and my degree in order to ruin my career. Whenever we needed to work in pair on a task I made sure I worked with the one that I social with the most and not the ones that had the grudge; the last thing needed while working in a hospital was conflict and being hypocritical.

The major issue of all was doing course work while doing the work experience; during the 2 months work experience we were at some point required to get some course work / power point presentations created more pressure on us. We worked from 9am – 5pm, knackered for the rest of the night so had to rest but not in this situation on some nights had to get some the coursework / presentation done. It was all down to time-management more work and less socialising, Monday to Friday 9am-5pm, work an hour off each night was for investigations and the type up of the coursework, weekends most of the works were done including the rehearsal of the presentation as well as revision for upcoming examinations

Dewey (1933)

Donald Schön (1983)

Goodman (1984, cited by jasper 2003)

Griffith, R., Tegnah, C. (2008)

Tingle .J. and Cribb .A. ( 2007).