Transforming self-regulated learning research by articulating a primary—secondary schooling transition pedagogy

Year: 2016

Author: Peel, Karen

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Despite the crucial role that self-regulated learning plays in enhancing students’ achievement at school and beyond, few studies have reported how teachers’ pedagogical practices provide opportunities for young adolescent students to regulate their own learning. The purpose of this research was to explore how teachers working with students from Years 5 to 9 in Australian classrooms talked about fostering effective learning. Through these teachers’ reflections on their pedagogical practices, I articulated a primary—secondary schooling transition pedagogy for self-regulated learning.This study’s conceptual framework drew from large bodies of research, including the social cognitive perspective of self-regulated learning (Zimmerman, 1989), integrated with the continuum of motivation from the theory of self-determination (Deci & Ryan, 2002). Using a dual case study design, I explored the teachers’ pedagogical practices within the transitionally connected primary and secondary school settings. The research methods enabled the collection of rich qualitative data through semi-structured interviews and classroom observations with eight teacher participants. The thematic data analysis operated iteratively at different stages of the collection process. I analysed the data and interpreted the findings from the constructed codes, categories and themes.The data revealed that in attempting to teach effectively the teachers created environments that provided opportunities for their young adolescent students to self-regulate their learning. For instance, the teachers designed learning and demonstrated practices that connected the learning experiences to inspire their students’ interests. Furthermore, they facilitated the scaffolded experiences that empowered the students to develop their sense of agency for active learning engagement. The teachers adjusted the levels of challenge and support to diversify the learning for the students to expect success. Within the social classroom environment, the teachers and the students shared the responsibility for the learning through interactions that provided feedback to enhance and monitor learning. Accordingly, the self-regulated learning pedagogy used by the teachers went beyond their management of students’ behaviour for compliance, towards the students’ developing their own resourcefulness for learning. The practical implications of this study are relevant to researchers and practitioners, because they foreground teachers’ effective practices to inform a primary—secondary schooling transition pedagogy for self-regulated learning. As a transformative step in enhancing self-regulated learning research, I proposed a framework for pedagogical reflection that offers an understanding of classroom environments aimed at providing external supports to generate students’ internal desires for learning.Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2002). Overview of self-determination theory: An organismic dialectical perspective. In E. L. Deci & R. M. Ryan (Eds.), Handbook of self-determination research (pp. 3-33). Rochester, NY: University of Rochester Press.Zimmerman, B. J. (1989). A social cognitive view of self-regulated academic learning. Journal of Educational Psychology, 81(3), 329-339.