Reflection at work – A conceptual model and the meaning of its components in the domain of VET teachers

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch articleContributedpeer-review



Professional development requires reflection. However, a conceptual model that considers the different perspectives on reflection remains missing. Regarding reflection, three different research streams can be distinguished: (I) an individual action-process-perspective, (II) a critical perspective, and (III) a social-relatedness perspective. From these three streams, important components are derived in the present study and integrated into one conceptual model. This model contains the individual and contextual components which influence reflection and considers reflection to be a process containing mutually influencing emotion, motivation, and cognition which can lead to various outcomes such as performance and, consequently, innovation. For illustrating the meaning of the model’s components in a specific professional context, we used data from an interview study with eight teachers of vocational schools. The conceptual model can serve as a basis for further research on reflection in all kinds of work contexts and be used to foster professional development, for instance by developing interventions to foster reflection.


Original languageEnglish
Article number923888
JournalFrontiers in Psychology
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jan 2023

External IDs

PubMed 36698576
Scopus 85147033769
WOS 000916740900001
ORCID /0000-0002-8792-5107/work/142234675


ASJC Scopus subject areas


  • conceptual model, informal learning, process of reflection, professional development, reflection, reflection at work, Reflection, Informal learning, Professional development, Reflection at work, Conceptual model, Process of reflection