Date of Award

Spring 2014

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



First Advisor

Dina Anselmi

Second Advisor

David Reuman


Self-regulated learning is comprised of motivation, cognition, and metacognition. This study aimed to improve eighth grade social studies students’ self-regulated learning and academic performance through the implementation of an intervention in the social studies curriculum. The intervention centered on exposing students to the different dimensions of metacognition (i.e., comprehending and being able to control one’s own cognitive processes) based on research findings that showed a link between metacognition and academic performance (Dignath & Büttner, 2008; Kistner et al., 2010). The intervention was designed to foster the students’ knowledge and use of metacognitive strategies through group work and cognitive discussions based on the research by Paris and Paris (2001). Four eighth-grade history sections taught by one teacher and two sections taught by a second teacher participated in the study. Three sections were randomly assigned to the intervention group and the other three to the control group. All students completed pre- and post-testing qualitative and quantitative measures of metacognition. In addition, student performance was evaluated in terms of overall changes in grades from the first to third marking period. As predicted, the experimental group showed an increase in metacognition assessed through qualitative and quantitative measures. There was no effect of the intervention on student performance; however, both the qualitative and quantitative measures of metacognition were positively correlated with course grades.


Senior thesis completed at Trinity College for the degree of Bachelor of Science in Psychology.