Friday, January 05, 2007

B71 #23: Metacognition

Since nobody is contributing UGC, let me start one with "metacognition".

At our age, our primary concerns are Health and Wealth. Elaborating a bit, our primary concerns are:
a) Physical health - fit to go around
b) Mental health - fit to think and reason
c) Spiritual health - fit to do something meaningful
d) Physical wealth - have money
e) Mental wealth - have knowledge
f) Spiritual wealth - have friends

I read the term "metacognition" from today's newspaper, and extracted related information from internet. The news relate to the introduction of "3-3-4" education system in HK which means 3+3 years of secondary school and 4 years university.

Among other requirements, all students (irrespective of arts or science major) are required to study language and mathematics subjects up to Form 6 before graduating from secondary school. Some education experts suggest to introduce "metacognition" along with the change to facilitate students to cope with multi-discipline learning.

Being science graduates, I think we are well-trained under item (b) and (e) to apply "metacognition" and to continue our life-long learning.

As suggested in the newspaper, we have great potential to pursue items (c) and (f) to help others (especially youngsters) to expand knowledge.

I hope our "teacher" U-mates would join our discussion.



後設認知(Metacognition),又名"Knowledge of knowledge", "Learning of learning", 是一種個人控制及引導心智歷程的現像。利用這種現像,我們可以用之於學習策略,讓學生瞭解到自己的思想模式之同時,透過控制自己的思想模式,從而達至果效的學習方法。簡單一點來講,就是對自己的認知過程(包括:記憶perception計算, 聯想等各項)的思考。

Metacognitive strategies are thought to be valuable classroom tools by contemporary teachers, since most successful learners engage these naturally to some extent. Therefore they are explicitly taught and utilised across curricula to enhance learner performances.



METACOGNITION consists of three basic elements:
Developing a plan of action
Maintaining/monitoring the plan
Evaluating the plan

Before - When you are developing the plan of action, ask yourself:
What in my prior knowledge will help me with this particular task?
In what direction do I want my thinking to take me?
What should I do first?
Why am I reading this selection?
How much time do I have to complete the task?

During - When you are maintaining/monitoring the plan of action, ask yourself:
How am I doing?
Am I on the right track?
How should I proceed?
What information is important to remember?
Should I move in a different direction?
Should I adjust the pace depending on the difficulty?
What do I need to do if I do not understand?

After - When you are evaluating the plan of action ask yourself:
How well did I do?
Did my particular course of thinking produce more or less than I had expected?
What could I have done differently?
How might I apply this line of thinking to other problems?
Do I need to go back through the task to fill in any "blanks" in my understanding?

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