|Most journal assignments encourage informal, exploratory writing. Writing in journals is more about generating
ideas and insights or recording observations than about writing polished prose in grammatically correct form.
The content and structure of a journal depend on its purpose:
- A personal diary may
contain a lot of different thoughts about each day's events but
have no other particular focus.
- An observation log is usually structured by the experiment
or field research you're conducting.
- A dialectical (questioning) notebook or a learning
log contains your reactions to new topics introduced in class.
- Reading journals encourage
both close reading and careful preparation for class discussions. (Reading journals are increasingly being kept on line.)