Metacognition enhances learning

Various studies have revealed that metacognition helps to enrich students’ learning in different domains. For example, it has the potential to increase students’ capacities for independent learning (Ganz & Ganz, 1990).

Research also shows that knowledge of metacognition, such as being familiar with one’s strengths and weaknesses and searching for ways to overcome the latter, contributes to more effective learning (Bransford, Brown, & Cocking, 1999). Research also suggests that metacognition improves one’s chances of success when it comes to completing activities that rely heavily on thinking processes (Garner & Alexander, 1989; Pressley & Ghatala, 1990).

Many studies in metacognition have concluded that those who have advanced metacognitive abilities are more adaptable and steadfast in problem solving (e.g., see Artzt & Armour-Thomas, 1992; Swanson, 1990). Studies have also shown that one’s ability to plan and monitor a problem-solving process requires several metacognitive skills such as regulation and evaluation of thought processes (Mayer, 1999), and the use of metacognitive skills has the potential to identify the more able students from the less able ones (Pellegrino, Chudowsky & Glaser, 2001).

In addition, research has shown that one’s individual and group learning skills can be improved through the acquisition of metacognitive competencies (White & Frederiksen, 2005). Recent studies have also revealed that students who often fail to choose appropriate strategies, monitor or regulate their work, or articulate their thought processes are more likely to perform poorly in mathematics (e.g., see Lucangeli & Cabrele, 2006; Carlson & Bloom, 2005).



Note: The above paragraphs are adapted from my minor research paper, Examining Supports for Metacognition in Singaporean Lower Secondary Mathematics Textbooks, NIE, 2011. All rights reserved.

Related links:

(1) Metacognition – The secret to learning and problem-solving;

(2) Metacognition and problem-solving;

(3) Is Metacognition part of the Singapore Math curriculum?




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