Learning in online learning environments, such as Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), requires learners to self-regulate their learning. Self-regulated learning (SRL) refers to the degree to which learners actively monitor and control their learning process towards goal attainment. Previous studies suggested that many learners do not spontaneously self-regulate their learning and that some form of SRL support is needed. We conducted a study in three MOOCs to examine whether prompting SRL would enhance learners’ SRL, course engagement, and course performance.
Learners who were enrolled in the three MOOCs were randomly assigned to one of the three versions of each MOOC: original, question only, and question followed by recommendation. Learners in the question only version had access to SRL-prompt videos with three questions to prompt SRL, while learners in the question followed by recommendation version had access to SRL-prompt videos with three recommendations for SRL following the questions. An example of the questions and recommendations in one of the SRL-prompt videos is provided in Figure 1. Learners in the control condition did not have access to any of the SRL-prompt videos.
In general, learners who viewed the SRL-prompt videos completed a greater proportion of course activities on time than learners in the control condition. However, the effectiveness of prompting SRL was not consistent in all three MOOCs, suggesting that it is important to consider course characteristics, such as course difficulty and organisation, when examining the effect of SRL prompts on the learning process. Particularly in the MOOC that required the most effort, we found that learners who viewed the SRL-prompt videos performed more SRL-related activities, were more engaged and achieved a higher course grade.
For a more detailed description of the study and its results, you can access our recently published article via this link https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0747563220303435
Wong, J., Baars, M., de Koning, B. B., & Paas, F. (2020). Examining the use of Prompts to Facilitate Self-Regulated Learning in Massive Open Online Courses. Computers in Human Behavior, 106596.