Beyond "study skills": a curriculum-embedded framework for metacognitive development in a college chemistry course.

Academic Article


  • BACKGROUND: There is a critical need for evidence-based metacognition instruction models with an ease of implementation. Three issues involved in advancing the implementation and assessment of metacognitive interventions are: (i) the lack of an operational framework for the development of metacognition; (ii) metacognition instruction models that lack a focus on explicitly engaging students' self-perceptions; (iii) a lack of metacognitive interventions that are easy to implement and require minimal training. This study describes the development and implementation of a 10-week discussion-based module to promote metacognitive development as part of a general chemistry course at a community college. This curricular metacognition instruction model involved the explicit engagement of self-efficacy beliefs in addition to introducing metacognitive awareness and regulation through individual and group reflection. This approach involves a systematic framework which allowed students to confront their beliefs about their abilities, learn various task strategies, and practice these strategies along with their peers. This case study was designed to address the following: can explicit cognitive and metacognitive instruction and discussion serve as a catalyst for students to (1) build and adapt metacognitive knowledge about cognition, and (2) incorporate effective study strategies?. RESULTS: Students' individual and collaborative reflections were analyzed using a thematic analysis. Written journal responses indicate that the module facilitated a shared discourse about cognition where metacognitive awareness was observed shifting from a tacit to explicit awareness. In addition, the framework facilitated the formation of support networks (cognitive and emotional) where students were observed exchanging cognitive strategies and encouraging one another to persevere through challenges. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that the metacognitive instruction model described here can serve as a mechanism to encourage student reflection on their beliefs and behaviors. Instructors looking to include metacognition instruction could use the framework presented as a template. The discussion-based module is embedded in the curriculum, delivered through the course management system, and has a low barrier to implementation. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The online version contains supplementary material available at 10.1186/s40594-022-00376-6.
  • Authors

  • Gamby, Sonja
  • Bauer, Christopher
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • 2022
  • Keywords

  • Chemistry
  • Community college
  • Curriculum
  • Metacognition
  • Self-regulated learning
  • Study skills
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Start Page

  • 61
  • Volume

  • 9
  • Issue

  • 1