Transforming Students Into Self-Regulated Learners
Dr. Linda Nilson, an expert on the subject of self-regulated learning, spoke to our audience in November about how learning center managers can use their platform to encourage this behavior in students.
So, what is self-regulated learning? Dr. Nilson explained it’s a way for students to support themselves or a way for them to learn how to learn. Higher education employees such as student support center managers, tutors, and staff, are in a unique position to teach this behavior.
Students generally don’t come to college with the skills they need for self-regulated learning. Dr. Nilson points out the thoughts students generally have about learning at this stage in their education. They often believe that learning isn’t something that they have any control over, but that it is something that either happens or doesn’t happen, regardless of the effort they put in. For students who were able to learn quite easily in high school, often also believe that once they are in college, learning should still be easy. If it’s hard, their thinking is often that it’s either their own fault as the student or the instructor’s fault.
Self-regulated learning, Dr. Nilson explained, is the antidote to this kind of thinking. It involves the conscious planning, monitoring, and evaluation of learning throughout the learning process, and there are several dimensions to consider:
There are numerous benefits to self-regulated learning, many of which can be seen both anecdotally and in research. These benefits include increased motivation, efficacy, performance, and professionalism for students. Again, Dr. Nilson explains these benefits in greater detail in her presentation, and also points to the research that shows the connection between self-regulated learning and these improvements.