Thursday, May 29, 2014

Metacognition - Thinking about Thinking

The scientific evidence based in neuroscience that exerting one’s brain to evaluate information can amplify its strength is profound and inspiring as it recommends a strategy to enhance one’s thinking and intellect.

The term that refers to the process of thinking about thinking is called metacognition. The frequency to which one engages in metacognition facilitates critical thinking, which is a skill college students are constantly required to demonstrate.

One of the benefits of metacognition is the ability to easily retract from a situation, event, or information and process not only one’s thoughts induced by the experience but also the emotions and feelings associated with the specific information received.

Metacognition fosters and strengthens psychological, emotional, and intellectual development. Similarly, the article by Elizabeth (2013) highlights the field of neuroscience and the brain’s capacity to acquire additional neural connections to increase its power to process information.

Another advantage of metacognition is the capacity to evaluate one’s own inner-world and create unique perspectives, ideas, and values that one can integrate into new information received to facilitate their choices, decisions, and overall life satisfaction.

It is particularly important for college students to understand their metacognitive processes as they venture into the world of academia, as they will undoubtedly encounter challenges within their educational pursuits, while balancing the uncertainties life can drop into their personal and professional lives.

Comprehending one’s own metacognitive processes is essential to student success. To learn more about metacognition and the empirical evidence provided by neuroscience for this valuable skill go to Rio Salado’s Library page and search the article databases:

If you need help finding an article and/or using the site feel free to take advantage of the 24-hour live chat with a librarian option. 

Contributed by Rio Salado Counselor Elena Matus McDonald on behalf of Rio Salado's Counseling Services, helping students with their personal, educational and career goals.

References: Elizabeth, T. (2013). The social neuroscience of education: Optimizing attachment and learning in the classroom. Harvard Educational Review, 83(4), 655-658.