Self Regulated Learning in Online Courses

In the module that I have developed on Solutions I do think that self-regulated learning will have to be addressed at the beginning of the module and will most likely continue on-off until the module due date arrives.  Most of my students don’t  self-regulated their learning in a face-to-face class so why would I expect them to do so in an online environment.  As the students begin the module I plan on providing the them  with a rubric as to how the work will be evaluated .  To me the rubric helps the students with goal setting.  Not all students seek to earn an A so they will able to determine what is the minimum amount of work required to pass.  Students also need to be reminded to submit early and often as technology is not perfect.  I also feel as though the students should be required to show some evidence of learning after they have watched online video presentations.  Too often students “watch” a video with very little focus and attention to detail.  This creates an opportunity for me to provide feedback long before they reach the application of content in the virtual lab.  Lastly, students need to be reminded to make the content their own.  Print out notes and highlight them or summarize them in a concept map.  Don’t be so passive during the learning process.

As the students work through the module they will need prompting to seek out help from the instructor or their peers when reaching the problem solving portion .  I say this as I have pushed them all year to ask for help, ask questions, discuss results with lab partners, etc., as many students see themselves as a silent island.  They become frustrated as tasks become more difficult but refuse to seek clarification and assistance.  Those students who routinely seek help self regulate and adjust their strategy for solving the problem go on to be very successful.  At the high school level you will have clusters of students who have developed the skills for self-regulated learning but most are clearly not ready to be successful in an online course.  So the question remains, at what point in a student’s educational path do we identify the necessary skills for SRL so that students will do well in any type of learning environment?  or do the students need to be more mature before addressing concepts such as self-assessment?


2 thoughts on “Self Regulated Learning in Online Courses”

  1. I think the rubric is a really good idea. I think it will help them to focus on what they need to do to be successful. As we both well know, there are many students that are just not ready for the independent nature of online work…. or really any learning that requires them to put forth deliberate effort.

  2. Lynn, Its a great question about when students are ready for SRL. Almost all research in this area has been with college students, so we dont know. But, it seems like these skills should be taught sooner to me. Again, not a lot of research in this area though, i could be wrong

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