Student Responsibility for Learning

Guideline:  Encourage students to take responsibility for their own learning, and support their development of higher-order thinking skills, e.g.: analysis, synthesis & evaluation.

Students learn well when they take responsibility for their learning.

Gibbs, G. & Habeshaw, T., Preparing to Teach: An Introduction to Effective Teaching in Higher Education, Technical and Educational Services, Ltd., Bristol, p. 37 (1989).

Learner-centered teaching encourages students to reflect on what they are learning and how they are learning it. Learner-centered teachers talk about learning. In casual conversations, they ask students what they are learning. In class they may talk about their own learning. They challenge student assumptions about learning and encourage them to accept responsibility for decisions they make about learning; like how they study for exams, when they do assigned reading, whether they revise their writing or check their answers.

Weimer, Maryellen, Learner-Centered Teaching: Five Key Changes to Practice, Jossey-Bass, San Francisco (2002).

Self-regulated learners…are distinguished by their view of academic learning as something they do for themselves, rather than something that is done to or for them.

Zimmerman, B., “Developing self-fulfilling cycles of academic regulation: an analysis of exemplary instructional models, D., Self-Regulated Learning: From Teaching to Self-Reflective Practice, The Guilford Press, New York, p. 1 (1998).


Additional References

Bielaczyc, K., Peter, L., & Brown, A. L. (1995). Training in self-explanation and self-regulation strategies: Investigating the effects of knowledge acquisition activities on problem solving. Cognition and Instruction, 13(2), 221-252.

Blumberg, P.  Developing Learner-Centered Teaching: A Practical Guide for Faculty, Jossey-Bass.  (2008).

Davis, T. & Murrell, P., Turning Teaching into Learning:  The Role of Student Responsibility in the Collegiate Experience (1994).

Di Stefano, G., Gino, F., and Pisano, G.P., and Staats, B.R., Learning by Thinking: How Reflection Aids Performance (March 25, 2014). Harvard Business School NOM Unit Working Paper No. 14-093; Harvard Business School Technology & Operations Mgt. Unit Working Paper No. 14-093. or

Kinzie, M.B., Sullivan, H.J. & Berdel, R.L., “Learner control and achievement in science computer-assisted instruction” Journal of Educational Psychology, vol. 80, no. 3, pp. 299-303 (1988).

Magolda, M.B.B., Creating Contexts for Learning and Self-Authorship. Vanderbilt University Press. (1999).

McCombs, B.L. & Marzano, R.J., “Putting the Self in Self-Regulated Learning: The Self as Agent in Integrating Will and Skill”, Educational Psychologist, vol. 25, issue 1, pp. 51-69 (1990).

Mochon, Daniel, & Norton, Michael I. (2012). The IKEA effect: when labor leads to love. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 22(3), 453-460. doi: 10.1016/j.jcps.2011.08.002

Pintrich, Paul R., Boekaerts, Monique (Ed); Pintrich, Paul R. (Ed); Zeidner, Moshe (Ed), (2000). The role of goal orientation in self-regulated learning. Handbook of self-regulation. , (pp. 451-502). San Diego, CA, US: Academic Press, xxix, 783 pp. doi: 10.1016/B978-012109890-2/50043-3

Schunck, D. & Zimmerman, B.(eds), Self-Regulated Learning: From Teaching to Self-Reflective Practice, The Guilford Press, New York (1998).

Schraw, G., Crippen, K. J., & Hartley, K. D. (2006). Promoting self-regulation in science education: Metacognition as part of a broader perspective on learning. Research in Science Education, 36(1-2), 111-139.

Zimmerman, B.J. & Martinez, M., “Construct Validation of a Strategy Model of Student Self-Regulated Learning”, Journal of Educational Psychology, vol. 80, issue 3, pp. 284-290 (1988).


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