Meta-Cognitive Reflection 2.0

MetacognitionWith another spring semester coming to an end, I’m mentally reviewing what I can change for the next academic year. I think that the meta-cognitive reflection exercises that I bracket all my courses with — the knowledge plan and the quality of failure essay —  need some minor adjustments. My directions for the knowledge plan currently read as follows:

Identify your goals for this course by writing a 2-3 page essay (double-spaced, equivalent to 11 or 12 point font) that answers these questions: 

– What do you plan to learn in this course?
– What will you need to do to learn the knowledge and skills that you want to learn?

– How do your goals for this course correspond to how you are living your life?

Answering the following question can help you construct your knowledge plan.

– What do I want to get out of this course, and what do I need to do to achieve that?
– How will my academic strengths and weaknesses affect my ability to achieve my goal?

– What can I do to improve my understanding of the subject beyond the minimum that is required?
– How will I respond if I start to struggle in this course?
– How are the different ways that I will be evaluated in this course connected to what and how I can learn?
– What are the available resources for learning that I can use to my advantage? What must I do to use these resources?
– What are the barriers I often create that diminish my learning, and how can I change these behaviors?
– How can I shape my interactions with fellow students to increase my (and their) learning?
– What is the role of the instructor in my learning process?
– What am I not asking but should be?

As is typical of professors, I have created a long list of questions that students probably find confusing or irrelevant. A better approach is:

Plan for this course by writing a 2-3 page essay (double-spaced, equivalent to 11 or 12 point font) that answers these questions: 

– What do I want to get out of this course?
– What do I need to do to achieve my goal?
– What are the barriers I often create that diminish my learning, and how can I change these behaviors?
– How will I respond if I start to struggle in this course?

For the quality of failure essay, I’ve already inserted short reading assignments to add a compare-and-contrast element. The revised directions for the essay:

Read:

– The assignment rubric.
– Robert J. Morris, “My Biggest Failure? Failing to Recognize Failure,” The New York Times, 16 June 2014.
– Adam Bryant, “Nancy Dubuc of A&E: Mixing Doers, Thinkers and Feelers,” The New York Times, 19 March 2015.

Write a 2-3 page essay that analyzes your failures in the course in relation to your knowledge plan from the beginning of the semester. Why did these failures occur? Are your experiences similar to those of Robert J. Morris and Nancy Dubuc? Why or why not? Explain what you have learned from your failures in this course.

One thought on “Meta-Cognitive Reflection 2.0

Leave a Reply