Developing Self-Regulated Learners (Zimmerman, Bonner, Kovach)

“We believe that all students have the power to become “smart learners” if they use self-regulatory processes to study more effectively.”

Academic self-regulation refers to self-generated thoughts, feelings, and actions intended to attain specific educational goals, such as analyzing a reading assignment, preparing to take a test, or writing a paper.

Compared with low-achieving students, high achievers report setting more specific learning goals for themselves, using more strategies to learn, self monitoring learning progress more frequently, and more systematically adapting their efforts on the basis of learning outcomes.

Self-monitoring is the deliberate observation of covert and overt aspects of one’s performance outcome on a given task, such as comprehending while reading.

High achievers feel self-efficacious and personally responsible for their control of the academic learning process.

Self-efficacy refers to self-perceptions or beliefs of capability to learn or perform tasks at designated levels.

“metacognitive benefits of comprehensive self-regulatory training will become especially evident during the middle-school years and thereafter (Zimmerman – Martinez-Pons, 1990)

A self-regulatory cycle is designed to enhance not only student’s learning but also their perception of self-efficacy or control over the learning process. The self-regulatory cycle gives students a sense of personal control that has been shown to be a major source of intrinsic motivation to continue learning on one’s own (Zimmerman 1985, 1995).

“such classrooms are designed to draw on peer modeling and feedback as well as teacher resources in the process of becoming self-regulatory”.


Goal 1

Research suggests that most teachers are aware of their students who have self-regulatory problems (Zimmerman & Martinez-Pons, 1988)

Self-regulatory models of instruction focus on students’ use of specific processes to motivate and guide their learning.

The capability to self-regulate emerges naturally in a social climate of dedication and common purpose, such as in a family or an effective school (Schunk & Zimmmerman, 1996).

We suggest that an instructional model involving explicit training in goal setting, strategy use, self-monitoring, and systematic practice can be used in classroom situations.

This behavioral focus of academies influences the form of learning, with greater emphasis placed on expert and peer modeling, direct social feedback for performance efforts, and practice routines involving specific goals and methods of self-monitoring.

We have evidence that academic self-motivating grows initially from parental goal expectations but ultimately from acquired academic standards, perceived self-efficacy and personal goal setting (Zimmerman, Bandura, Martinez-Pons 1992)

Smart learners ultimately learn more with less effort once they discover the processes that work best for them, and this is where self-monitoring and other self-regulatory processes come into play.

The ultimate psychological advantages of this shift in academic focus to learning methods are profound because one’s progress in mastering methods of learning precedes improved learning outcomes (Bandura,  1986; Schunk & Swartz, 1993; Zimmerman & Bandura, 1994)

When student’s perceive a teacher’s primary goal as conveying how to learn, they will relax their self-defenses and will seek assistance more readily, often in the form of modelling and coaching from teachers and knowledgeable peers (Schunk & Zimmerman, 1996)

Learning strategies can be taught successfully from the elementary-school to the collegiate level as long as they are integrated within a larger framework of self-regulatory training. (Pressley & Woloshyn, 1995, Zimmerman, 1989)

Strategies are not a panacea for learning difficulties because their effectiveness depends on various personal and contextual factors.

To acquire mastery of optimal studying techniques students need to make multiple efforts to reveal the strategic components that are responsible for successes as well as those in need of further improvement.

Cycle : Self Evaluation—- Goal setting and strategic Planning— Strategy Implementation and monitoring—- strategic outcome/monitoring—-

Self-evaluation and monitoring occur when students judge their personal effectiveness often from observations and recordings of prior performances and outcomes.

Goal setting and strategic planning occur when students analyze the learning task, set specific learning goals, and plan or refine the strategy to attain the goal.

Strategy implementation monitoring: occurs when students try to execute a strategy in structured contexts and to monitor their accuracy in implementing it.

Strategic- Outcome Monitoring: Occurs when students focus their attention on links between learning outcomes and strategic processes to determine effectiveness.

By establishing this self-regulatory cycle, teachers help students learn to recognize and appreciate links between their study behaviors and learning outcomes.

The model is cyclic because self-monitoring on each learning trial provides information that can change subsequent goals, strategies, or performance efforts.

Self-regulatory is not an isolated endeavor but involves the self-directed use of social assistance and the use of informational resources (Newman, 1994)

Asking students to rate their self-efficacy rather after studying increases self-monitoring during the study session and awareness of which goals were actually accomplished.

Teachers can shift responsibility for the learning process by helping their students develop self-regulatory skill.

The teacher’s primary role in promoting SRL is to help students assume responsibility for their own learning progress.

By promoting student’s awareness of their use of study time, a teacher sets the stage for them to assume a greater role in regulating other aspects of their learning.

“Peer evaluations can have an important advantage when teacher collect the homework or quiz results to grade a student, they will be able to gauge the peer’s understanding of the judgmental criteria as well as the student’s strategic skill.

Self-efficacy is an important variable for students to monitor because it focuses attention on their beliefs about the effectiveness of their learning methods.

Self-Efficacy perceptions: One of the greatest strengths of self-regulatory approaches to academic skill development is that they provide students with the opportunities to see how activities under their control can bring them rewarding feelings.



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