Self-regulated learning and reading comprehension (Best evidence in brief)

There is a new Best Evidence in Brief and this time I picked this study from this biweekly newsletter written up by Andrea Ochoa, Johns Hopkins University:

Strategies that teach self-regulated learning in the context of other academic domains have been found to support academic achievement. In response to these findings, Nuñez and colleagues conducted an experimental study to evaluate the effectiveness of the paired reading and writing activities for “Yellow’s Trials and Tribulations,” a story from The Rainbow Program. The intervention consisted of guiding students to work through activities about characters who must use self-regulated learning strategies to progress through the story and meet their goals.

Study participants were children in grades 3 and 4 in state-funded and charter schools in Spain. Eighteen classes were assigned to the treatment (N=403), and 16 were assigned to a business-as-usual control condition (N=355). Treatment teachers attended four 3-hour professional development sessions focused on embedding self-regulated learning strategies in reading comprehension instruction. Researchers randomly audited lessons to evaluate the implementation fidelity and found that teachers implemented the intervention according to the established protocol with 87% accuracy. Treatment students participated in 12 weeks of 1-hour intervention lessons.


The study found the treatment group outperformed the control group on measures of self-regulated learning (ES=+0.77) and reading comprehension (ES=+1.21). Findings provide strong evidence for embedding the explicit teaching of metacognitive strategies within content instruction to improve learner autonomy and academic achievement.

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