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Metacognition: Learning Through Engagement


According to a recent study cited in the Chronicle of Higher Education (January 16, 2015), "while 59 percent of students said they were well prepared to analyze and solve complex problems, just 24 percent of employers said they had found that to be true of recent college graduates."

Metacognition - Learning through EngagementAt LSUS we equip our students for the workforce; we want them to graduate with life-long, transferable skills.  In our classes, we want to close the gap between their actual and projected abilities by helping them become more aware of learning as a process, so that they know specifically how they are learning.  This kind of "thinking about thinking" is called metacognition, or, as we like to phrase it, "learning through engagement."  Our Quality Enhancement Plan focuses on a student's self-knowledge of his or her learning styles as we teach describable and discrete higher-order thinking skills with self-conscious application of those skills to problem-solving.  Our QEP gives us a vocabulary to describe metacognitive activity as well as ways to measure and report what we are doing.

Metacognition is a process that spans three distinct phases. To be successful thinkers, students must do the following:

  • Develop a plan when approaching a learning task.
  • Monitor their understanding through the steps of the learning task, adjusting their strategies when they are confused or baffled.
  • Evaluate their thinking after completing the learning task to see which strategies were successful and which were not.

Click Here to view the Faculty Development Day 22nd August 2014-Power Point Presentation made by the QEP committee chair, Dr. Stephen W. Banks.  The presentation was followed by a Panel Discussion with Drs. Stephen Banks,  Helen Taylor, Paula Atkins, John Baarsch and Stephanie Aamodt and the presentation was sent to the entire faculty.

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