How to Educate Students to Self-Regulated Learning

Educating middle and high school learners on how to study assists them to see for themselves why and when to use various learning methods.

Self-regulated learning, aka SRL, is not a recent concept in education and has been contemplated as a best practice for decades. Yet it’s frequently comprehended with the literal implication of regulating one’s self through resisting emotions in check and is perplexing with a close cousin, social and expressive learning.

SRL is much more than just understanding procedures to regulate emotions. It also dabs into the often-missing element of teaching and learning, the metacognitive characteristics of learning, or learning how to learn for various contexts. SRL is knowing how to learn and being aware of your progression of learning toward particular goals.

A student with highly developed SRL mastery is aware of various learning methods and can determine the best techniques for their context, subject, or category of learning activity. Also, they have an advancement mindset. They have a detailed opinion of their established skill level and capabilities and take strides to bring about harmony to their capacities concentrating on growth and development. Through the iterative procedure of SRL, that comprises three phases:

  • Objective setting and strategic planning
  • Regulating performance and improvement toward objectives
  • Reflecting and making determinations on how to change their behaviour

They utilize their time adequately and schedule appropriately to complete their homework and study. They are the learners who have learned not to cram the night before an exam and select environments for studying that are helping to maximize learning. These learners do all of this while strengthening motivation and engagement.


The study has indicated three main ways in which SRL teaching is incorporated into teaching methods, but only one directs to long-term success.

1.Subtle SRL promotion: This is like tossing the child in the water so they can learn to swim without any lessons. The most widespread approach of SRL teaching occurs without educators even realizing it. We give our students space and a chance to practice research techniques and SRL. Nonetheless, we never immediately discuss or deliver instructions on the issue. Some learners will learn SRL on their own; others will unfortunately plummet.


2.Implied straightforward instruction: This is very much like jumping in the corner with the child and paddling alongside them to model attacks and techniques without ever giving particular instruction or justifications.

Implicit instruction also happens when educators construct their lessons with certain learning training that engage learners in SRL abilities, such as a self-reflection at the beginning of the unit in which students evaluate their improvement toward proficiency of learning objectives.


3.Detailed direct instruction: This encompasses more than criteria or establishing space for the skills to be applied. There is specific and direct instruction. In the swimming example, the child not only is provided pedagogy for various types of swimming strokes but also understands the benefits and drawbacks of different strokes, and why some swimming strokes are adequate in several contexts. Detailed direct instruction of SRL implies the students are familiar that they are memorizing study techniques and how to learn. They understand which techniques are best for various contexts and the perception for those benefits.

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