Metacognition: Helping Students Plan, Monitor, & Evaluate Study Skills & Strategies

09/28/2017 @ 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Goddard Hall Room 200 (Jerry Shaw conference room)
Goddard Hall NMSU
The Office of Engineering Research will host the first research seminar of the semester. Prof. Muhammad Dawood from Electrical and Computer Engineering will give a talk about his NSF-funded research in STEM education on Thur. Sept. 28 from 4-5pm in Goddard Hall Room 200 (Jerry Shaw conference room); refreshments will be served afterward.
Metacognition: Helping Students Plan, Monitor, & Evaluate Study Skills & Strategies
Prof. Muhammad Dawood
New Mexico State University
Klipsch School of Electrical and Computer Engineering

In the STEM education literature, much attention has been paid to the roles of instructors, pedagogy, and curriculum, with comparatively less attention on student characteristics and habits, and the roles these can play in student learning. Yet students’ own beliefs, choices, practices, and behaviors can determine academic outcomes. Self-efficacious students have been found to persist, engage more, and set and achieve higher goals in academic tasks. Fortunately, students’ levels of self-efficacy and their ability to monitor their own learning are factors that can be changed and improved. Metacognitive awareness can strengthen their ability to recognize the limits of their current learning practices, and then take steps to remedy the situation; such awareness is valuable for learners at all ages. Metacognition, often defined as “thinking about thinking,” is primarily about monitoring, understanding, and controlling thoughts, leading to more productive behavior and practices. Metacognitive strategies and practices can enhance learning and impact student achievement. Although the study of metacognition is not new, having gained traction in the late 1980s, the application of research on metacognition in engineering education is sparse. Yet two of the five major shifts in engineering education over the past 100 years point to a need for fostering metacognitive awareness. Among these two shifts, a move from hands-on to analytical attention has already occurred, but the other major shift, applying research on learning from education and social-behavioral sciences, is only now taking hold in undergraduate engineering education. Developing metacognitive awareness among students is critical, particularly in our Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) drawing many first-generation and academically- or economically-disadvantaged students.

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