Notes: Murphy, E. - A framework for identifying and promoting metacognitive knowledge and control in online discussants


Murphy, A. (2008). A framework for identifying and promoting metacognitive knowledge and control in online discussants. Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology. 34(2) pp. 1-18.

Abstract: The effectiveness of computer-based learning environments depends on learners' deployment of metacognitive and self-regulatory processes. Analysis of transmitted messages in a context of Computer Mediated Communication can provide a source of information on metacognitive activity. However, existing models or frameworks (e.g., Henri, 1992)1 that support the identification and assessment of metacognition have been described as subjective, lacking in clear criteria, and unreliable in contexts of scoring. This paper develops a framework that might be used by researchers analysing transcripts of discussions for evidence of engagement in metacognition, by instructors assessing learners' participation in online discussions or by designers setting up metacognitive experiences for learners.

The paper is just a framework for approaching online discussions wrt metacognition. it’s basically a beefy lit review, which is handy, but no methods to use, per se.

DN: my summary of the intro section: effectiveness of online learning is tied to learner’s regulation of their own learning, and to deployment of self-regulation and metacognitive processes. content analysis can provide info about metacognitive activity. Henri’s model of analysis makes it difficult to capture metacognitive activities. Interaction analysis gets at metacognitive activity better (see Gunawardena, Lowe & Anderson’s Interaction Analysis Model2 , ferinstance)

In general, there is an abundance of literature related to analysis of online discussions (…). However, MC has received meagre attention in this literature especially as compared to other skills, such as, critical thinking.

The paper relies on foundational work in the area of MC, including that of Flavell (1987)3 , Jacobs and Paris (1987)4 and Brown (1987)5. It also draws on Schraw and Dennison (1994)6 , who themselves built on Flavell’s work to create their Metacognitive Awareness Inventory. This paper also builds on Anderson et al.’s (2001)7 taxonomy of Mc knowledge and on Henri’s (1992)8. Berlin: Springer-Verlag. )) work.

Metacognitive variables (after Henri and Flavell):

  1. Person: All that is known or believed about the characteristics of humans as cognitive beings.
    indicators:
  • Comparing oneself to another as a cognitive agent
  • Being aware of one’s emotional state
  1. Task: All information acquired by a person in terms of the task or different types of tasks. Appreciation of the quality of available information.
    indicators:
  • Being aware of one’s way of approaching the task
  • Knowing whether the task is new or known
  1. Strategy: Means chosen to succeed in various cognitive tasks.
    indicators:
  • Strategies making it possible to reach a cognitive objective of knowledge acquisition
  • Metacognitive strategies aimed at self-regulation of progress

lots of examples in the paper of various indicators used by other researchers.

prompts:

If we conceptualize Mc knowledge as Declarative, Procedural and Conditional, what might be some actual examples of these types of knowledge in a context of an online discussion, i.e., if a researcher or instructor wanted to identify instances of Mc thinking, what types of statements might constitute signs or evidence?


  1. Henri, F. (1992). Computer conferencing and content analysis. In A. R. Kaye (Ed.), Collaborative learning through computer conferencing: the Najaden papers (pp. 117-36). Berlin: Springer-Verlag. ↩︎

  2. Gunawardena, C., Lowe, C., & Anderson, T. (1997). Interactional analysis of a global online debate and the development of constructivist interaction analysis model for computer conferencing. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 17(4), 395-429. ↩︎

  3. Flavell, J. H. (1987). Speculations about the nature and development of metacognition. In F. E. Weinert & R. H. Kluwe (Eds.), Metacognition, motivation and understanding (pp. 21-29). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum. ↩︎

  4. Jacobs, J. E., & Paris, S. G. (1987). Children’s metacognition about reading: Issues in definition, measurement, and instruction. Educational Psychologist, 22(3 & 4), 235-278. ↩︎

  5. Brown, A. L. (1987). Metacognition and other mechanisms. In F. E. Weinert & R. H. Kluwe (Eds.), Metacognition, motivation and understanding (pp. 65-116). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum. ↩︎

  6. Schraw, G., & Dennison, R. (1994). Assessing metacognitive awareness. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 19, 460-475. ↩︎

  7. Anderson, L., Krathwohl, D., Airasian, P., Cruikshank, K., Mayer, R., Pintrich, P., Raths, J., Wittrock, M. (2001). A taxonomy for learning, teaching and assessment: A revision of Bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives. New York: Longman. ↩︎

  8. Henri, F. (1992). Computer conferencing and content analysis. In A. R. Kaye (Ed.), Collaborative learning through computer conferencing: the Najaden papers (pp. 117-36) ↩︎


comments powered by Disqus