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e-book Cooperative Learning and Metacognitive Instruction

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The study lasted for 11 weeks. A researcher-made achievement test in the topic 'Human Anatomy' was used to measure achievement in the 3 groups. Results revealed that the metacognitive instructions were most effective in enhancing academic achievement. Multiple regression analysis shows that there is significant relationship between metacognitive awareness and achievement. The researcher recommends that metacognitive instruction be adopted regularly in the classroom so as to help students learn material more efficiently and enhance academic achievement.

Wischgoll, A. Combined training of one cognitive and one metacognitive strategy improves academic writing skills. Frontiers in Psychology, 7, Yves, K.

Metacognitive Strategies or “Thinking About My Thinking”

The development of a new instrument to assess metacognitive strategy knowledge about academic writing and its relation to self-regulated writing and writing performance. Journal of Writing Research, 9, Mark Feng Teng. Share Event: email facebook twitter. Are you already a member or do you want to create a guest account? This option is also for current members of AAAL who need to login. Create an Account. Are you ready to join AAAL? View Membership Information. A third rater was invited in the event differences might arise between the two.

In the reading comprehension test, the score was calculated based on the number of correctly answered items. One point was given for a correct answer while zero points were awarded for an incorrect answer. The maximum possible score for this test was 20 points. The vocabulary test included four parts. In the first part, correct L1 target words provided by the participants were marked correct.

In the second part, semantically correct L2 meanings provided by the learners were marked correct. In the third and fourth part, answers for which learners correctly selected the correct option out of four were marked correct. In all cases in which no answer was provided or an incorrect answer was provided, the learners received zero points. In all cases in which the learners provided a correct answer, they were given one point.

The maximum score for each dimension of the test was No disagreements between the two raters emerged on marking the two tests. This study was supported by the Department of English at one university in mainland China. It was explained to the participants that they would join a study using new learning and teaching methods and complete some reading exercises. However, they were not informed of the nature of their respective treatment conditions. Students participated in this research in exchange for extra course credit. None of the participants dropped out of the course or requested to terminate their participation in the study, although they were given the power to do so at any time without any consequences.

As suggested by the results of the pilot study, the time allowed for the experiment was minutes. The participants first spent 30 minutes on silent reading of a word token text containing the 15 target words. As explained earlier, the text had been edited to embed the target words. This story text was chosen because it is assumed that participants, who were at the intermediate English proficiency level, may be more interested in reading a story than other genres.

In addition, this is the type of textbook reading that is often required of EFL learners in China. After reading, the participants spent another 30 minutes reflecting on their understanding of the reading material. During this minute reflection period, the reading material was still at their disposal. Participants in the first treatment condition were given metacognitive prompts in a group setting. Participants in the second treatment condition worked in a group setting without metacognitive prompts.

Each group consisted of 4—6 students. Participants in the third treatment condition were given metacognitive prompts and worked individually. Participants in the fourth treatment condition worked individually without metacognitive prompts. The metacognitive prompts included some self-addressed metacognitive questions, covering two components: knowledge of metacognition and regulation of metacognition see Table 3. In the first treatment condition, metacognitive prompts were used by group members while reflecting on and discussing their reading comprehension, and by the teacher when providing help to the groups.

In the third treatment condition, prompts were used individually when reflecting on the reading and by the teacher when providing help to individuals. Participants were informed that asking and answering the metacognitive prompts would help them to better understand what they read. The teacher only provided help when students initiated a request for help.

Finally, the reading text was first collected and then participants were administered the unexpected reading and vocabulary tests. The participants were required to finish the tests within 60 minutes the first 30 minutes was given for completion of the reading test and the second 30 minutes was given for completion of the vocabulary test. In terms of the vocabulary test, the participants first took the form recall test, then the meaning recall test, followed by the form recognition test, and finally the meaning recognition test.

This process was aimed at minimizing any possible clues that the preceding test might provide for completing the subsequent test i. The teacher only distributed the next vocabulary test component to participants after having first collecting the previous component. Additionally, the order in which the target words were presented in each component of the vocabulary test was randomized and thus different.

The participants had the reading materials at their disposal while completing the reading test but for the vocabulary test, the reading materials were collected. This was because we aimed for the reading test to measure comprehension and not content memorization.

Since the data for the four dimensions of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship largely conformed to the MANOVA requirement of correlations from. After MANOVA analysis, pairwise comparisons were used to compare incidental vocabulary learning outcomes by treatment conditions. In addition, univariate tests were used to determine whether there were any significant differences among the four dimensions of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship.

Again, pairwise comparisons were performed to determine the relative difficulties of learning the four dimensions of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship.

Metacognition

Standard multiple regressions were conducted to explore the size of the effects of metacognitive prompts, setting, and their interaction on reading comprehension, as well as the learning of the four dimensions of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship. In terms of the analyses, the familywise error rate, i.

We used a Bonferroni correction to control the possibility of a Type I error. The p -value were 0. The results of the descriptive statistics of the reading comprehension test were first calculated. Next the 2x2 two-way ANOVA was conducted to examine whether there was a group effect on reading comprehension.

Results in Table 5 revealed a significant large effect of learning setting individual vs. This means that among the comprehension scores obtained by the four groups, the Collaborative Learning with Prompts CP group demonstrated the best reading comprehension performance see Table 6. The descriptive statistics for the vocabulary tests were also calculated.

As shown in Table 7 , the average total score for each of the four treatment conditions ranged from 2.


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The participants in the Collaborative Learning with Prompts CP group achieved the highest incidental vocabulary learning outcomes. In contrast, the participants in the Individual Learning without Prompts IL group achieved the lowest incidental vocabulary learning outcomes. In relation to the four dimensions of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship, the total scores ranged from 2.

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Meaning recognition appeared to be the easiest dimension for all participants to learn incidentally. In contrast, the knowledge of form recall was the most challenging dimension for all participants. Results are presented in Table 8. Following the multivariate tests, univariate tests were conducted to explore the effects of the four conditions on the incidental learning of the four dimensions of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship.

Results of the univariate tests presented in Table 9 revealed a significant effect of metacognitive prompts, a significant effect of learning setting, and a significant interaction effect between metacognitive prompts and learning setting; these results were consistent for the incidental learning of the four dimensions of form-meaning knowledge. Taken together, these results indicate that the provision of metacognitive prompts in a group setting was an effective means for incidental vocabulary learning.

Metacognition And Learning: Strategies For Instructional Design

In addition, participants using metacognitive prompts in an individual setting also consistently exhibited significantly higher scores for incidental learning than the participants without prompts in an individual setting. This result was shown irrespective of the dimension of vocabulary knowledge being assessed.

This result indicated that, irrespective of treatment condition, form recall of unknown words was the most challenging dimension for the participants to learn incidentally while the meaning recognition of unknown words was the least challenging. The deviations from zero for each variable was not equal possibly due to an unequal number of participants in the treatment conditions. In addition, the distribution of form and meaning recall test results violated assumptions of normality for skewness.

Transformations of the two variables, which were conducted by calculating the square root of each, resulted in normal distributions. The results of the standard multiple regression analyses for the four dimensions of the knowledge of the form-meaning relationship are presented in Table As shown in Table 11 , there were significant main effects for metacognitive prompts and setting and a significant Prompts x Setting interaction for reading comprehension.

The introduction of metacognitive prompts and collaborative learning increased reading comprehension. The main effects of collaborative learning over individual learning and the presence metacognitive prompts over the absence of metacognitive prompts on reading comprehension were clearly shown. In addition, the interaction between metacognitive prompts and learning setting on reading comprehension was also evident. A slight difference was shown for the meaning recall test.

Also, collaborative learning increased incidental vocabulary learning more than individual learning, but more so for meaning recall, form recognition, and meaning recognition. The main effects of collaborative learning over individual settings and the presence of metacognitive prompts over the absence metacognitive prompts were clearly evident. The significant interaction between prompts and settings indicated that using metacognitive prompts in a group setting does have an additive impact on enhancing the incidental learning knowledge of the form-meaning relationship to a greater extent than the other treatment conditions investigated.

Several issues related to the comparisons between the treatment conditions must be considered. First, the participants who received metacognitive prompts outperformed those without prompts for reading comprehension and incidental vocabulary learning. This outcome may be because metacognitive prompts provided a catalyst for learners to foster higher-order thinking skills and elaborate more on information during the execution of self-regulatory learning strategies.

A Focus on Teaching: Metacognition

Unsuccessful readers, however, lack such skills, which negatively affects textual level comprehension [ 28 , 62 ]. Having said this, we see the value of metacognitive prompts used by the participants in the current study with specific reference to the context in which reading takes place. The metacognitive prompts may have provided a springboard for the participants to infer text meaning via contextual and linguistic clues, and this may be one of the reasons the participants outperformed those participants without metacognitive prompts.

Education Research International

Those participants without metacognitive prompts may have remained at the perceptual processing stage [ 63 ]. Or else, they might have just made wild speculations and guesses about what they read [ 62 ]. Second, results indicated that when participants worked together in group settings to accomplish shared learning goals, higher individual achievement was shown. Thus, collaborative efforts lead to a better learning outcome and ensures cognitive development [ 50 , 53 , 64 ]. It seems that a collaborative learning setting may enable participants to engage in peer interactions and motivate them to argue, reason, and negotiate while reading [ 45 , 65 ].

Finally, the participants receiving metacognitive prompts in a group setting outperformed the participants in the other three treatment conditions. The improved performance included reading comprehension and incidental learning of form recall, meaning recall, form recognition, and meaning recognition of vocabulary knowledge. An interpretation of this outcome is that the types of metacognitive prompts were appropriate for a collaborative learning setting.

Specifically, the metacognitive prompts acquainted learners with the necessary actions to search for various information, monitor and evaluate this process, conduct argumentation, reason, and problem-solve, which enabled participants to engage in peer interaction and further motivated them to debate and reason with one another to understand the text while simultaneously grasping the gist of some difficult words [ 18 , 19 , 33 , 54 , 65 ].

These effects suggest that success in a group learning setting may be rooted in metacognitive processes. Therefore, the learners who were provided metacognitive prompts in a group setting outperformed even those learners who also learned in a group setting but without metacognitive prompts.

Findings from this study regarding the benefits of providing metacognitive prompts in a group setting for promoting reading and incidental vocabulary learning are also supported by previous research. In a group setting, Dahl [ 66 ] and Shih and Reynolds [ 65 ] observed students reflecting, verbalizing to others about their learning process, and synthesizing the new learning that allowed them to produce a dramatic skit to share with an entire class.

The collaborative interactions within a group dynamic acted as a stimulus for learners to execute metacognitive strategies associated with their cooperative tasks and stimulate a problem-solving process for observing discrepancies between actual and intended text comprehension. A similar process might have helped the participants in the current study to detect the problems arising while reading and then correct the problems, which has been shown as an effective means for enhancing text comprehension [ 54 ] as well as the understanding of unknown vocabulary [ 55 ].

The results from the current study support the social interdependence theory that underscores social support and classroom interaction for the enhancement of the psychosocial adjustments of learners [ 67 ; 68 ]. In his study, participants in a group setting received reading texts on expert topics along with accompanying worksheets that were to be used to assist with comprehension of concepts and ideas presented in the reading materials.

In contrast, the learners in the present study received metacognitive prompts in a cooperative learning setting to facilitate their reading comprehension process. The metacognitive prompts provided to participants in the current study may have provided the benefits of improved judgment in discerning of the subject matter and initiating a process of inquiry [ 39 ]. Hence, the provision of metacognitive prompts in a group setting may initiate academic support from peers as they negotiated meaning, providing members of the group a rich resource for solving problems inherent in comprehending texts, thereby guiding them to achieve common goals by reflecting on how to recognize and recall a certain level of vocabulary knowledge.

As asserted by Davis [ 40 ], learners who are engaged in reflection are better able to expand their repertoire of knowledge or ideas, determine weaknesses in their current knowledge, and link what they already know to exploring what they do not know. As proposed in previous research [ 49 ], merely putting learners into small groups does not automatically lead to interactive group work and effective learning.

Some learners may lack positive interdependence and individual accountability [ 69 ], or an inability to plan, monitor and reflect upon their learning processes [ 48 ], which may further affect cooperative learning. Evidenced by the findings in the present study, we argue that the deficit of having collaborative learning may be compensated by the provision of metacognitive prompts.

These prompts directed the participants in the current study to apply metacognitive strategies in fostering explanations and engaging in discussions, reflect upon the task at hand, and direct peer instruction to improve self-regulated learning [ 41 ]. This progression also led to deeper processing of information, facilitation of higher-order thinking skills, and ultimate improvement of intended learning results.

The results of the present study also highlight the value of self-regulatory learning for reading comprehension and learning new words incidentally encountered during reading. The participants who received the prompts were encouraged to respond to questions that asked how well they could understand the text, how confident they were about their reading comprehension, and how they would assess their reading strengths and weaknesses.

The metacognitive prompts, which focused on planning, monitoring, and evaluating, seemed to assist the participants in the following ways. First, the prompts helped the participants to figure out how to approach the reading task during a planning phase. With the help of the prompts, the participants analyzed the characteristics of the reading task, assessed their capacity to perform it, and established goals and a plan on how to complete the task [ 16 ]. Second, the prompts helped the participants self-observe and self-control during the performance phase [ 34 ].

Third, the prompts provided guidelines for the participants to self-reflect on their learning. During this self-reflection phase, the participants began building a capacity to judge their learning and formulate reasons for their ability to comprehend the reading text. The participants may have reacted cognitively to their own attributions by judging their success and failure as opportunities to improve reading comprehension. In the present study, the frequency of exposure to the new words was controlled to one occurrence.

This lends credibility to the argument that metacognitive prompts training could be effective in enhancing incidental vocabulary learning. However, Panadero and Alonso-Tapia [ 22 ] argued that the self-regulatory feedback model by Zimmerman and Moylan [ 30 ] did not cover the social aspects of regulation of learning. The results from the present study seemed to support the role of group work in enhancing self-regulated learning. The participants with prompts in a group setting appeared to have self-regulated their learning through scaffolding provided by their peers. This suggests that self-regulation happened during the collaborative interactions among peers [ 71 ].

Hence, the self-regulatory feedback model should not only focus on how learners self-regulate their learning but also how they explore the synergies and interactions belonging to the regulation while completing group work. This determination suggests a need to explore the three types of regulation [ 71 ] : a self-regulated learning, with a focus on how individuals adapt to it for the realizations of their goals; b co-regulated learning, with an emphasis on the interaction between two or more individuals in a group; and c socially shared regulated learning, in which a joint management of the group members is employed to achieve negotiated and shared goals.

Although the use of metacognitive prompts in addressing the three types of regulation was not covered in the present study, we hope other researchers will consider investigating additional types of metacognitive prompts in future studies. The results from the present study highlight that learners gain different levels of mastery over lexical items. Although the four dimensions of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship were interrelated and holistically connected, the process of learning vocabulary was observed to follow an incremental nature[ 8 ].

The present study results suggest that some dimensions of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship were mastered before others regardless of the treatment condition. For example, just from exposure to a new word in a written text, word meaning recognition was more likely to be picked up than form recognition, meaning recall, and form recall. However, findings in the present study could not confidently explain how the different types of knowledge of the form-meaning relationship developed in relation to each other.

Perhaps it was because the measures employed in the present study were limited as they could only examine the learning outcome of multiple types of vocabulary knowledge concurrently. Still, there was a pattern in the results that indicated the combination of a group setting along with the metacognitive prompts led to higher rates of incidental vocabulary learning—this pattern in the data was present regardless of the type of vocabulary knowledge assessed.

In summary, the findings in the present study established that learners working in groups and with metacognitive prompts were more likely to improve reading comprehension and to incidentally learn more unknown words from reading. When considering the interactive effects of prompts and group settings, it was revealed that the prompts may have directed the learners to conduct self-reflection and take metacognitive control of their knowledge, which likely illuminated their sense of strengths and weaknesses.

In addition, group work appeared to help learners internalize and activate metacognitive processes for reading and vocabulary learning. The present study provides implications for classroom practice using metacognitive prompts. First, learners may benefit from either metacognitive prompts or collaborative group learning as a part of their studies. Incorporating metacognitive prompts or arranging participants to study in a group may be a palatable means for learners to achieve an extended level of performance in reading comprehension and new word learning. Second, self-regulated learning relates to how teachers gradually transfer responsibility to students.

The learners that participated in the current study were required to assume responsibility for the development of their reading and vocabulary learning skills. The results of the current study revealed that this endeavor by the classroom teacher was worthwhile as the engagement of metacognitive prompts encouraged the learners to reflect on their reading process and solve their problems resulting from an inadequacy of language knowledge to comprehend and understanding textual information. Results further revealed that the employment of comprehension reading strategies e.

Therefore, it is of value for reading teachers to familiarize their learners with knowledge and strategies of metacognition to help improve learners reading comprehension [ 72 ]. Teachers might also need to guide and scaffold learners to use those strategies in a collaborative learning setting to ensure that peer feedback facilitates higher levels of reading comprehension; this is especially important for learners with limited linguistic knowledge [ 23 ].

Limitations also exist in this study.

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First, the participants were not exposed to reading tasks of varying complexity, which would have allowed for further exploration of potential interactive effects of metacognitive prompts and additional group dynamics. However, this may be better accomplished in a separate study as adding reading text complexity as an independent variable would have also increased the complexity of the research design. Second, this study was limited to tertiary level students at one university in China.

Differences in performance between genders were not analyzed and the generalizability of the findings may be limited to Chinese learners of English.


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  • Third, group membership was determined through random assignment by the classroom teacher. Students who experienced any personality conflict while working with each other might be reluctant to continue group work or at the very least have their participation affected to some degree. Future studies should also analyze team heterogeneity, i.

    Fourth, this study aimed to measure four dimensions of the knowledge of form-meaning relationships. However, test effects may have occurred and influenced the findings. In addition, this study lacked a pretest and a delayed post-test.