What self-regulation strategies do elementary students utilize while learning online?

Jodie Torrington*, Matt Bower, Emma C. Burns

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Little is known about the strategies elementary school students use to self-regulate their learning while in a hypermedia environment. This exploratory study investigated the self-regulatory strategies that young students (N = 48, Mage = 10.75) utilized while individually completing a 20-min online research task about space. Video data was coded using Azevedo et al.'s (2004) established coding scheme for analyzing self-regulatory behavior in hypermedia environments. Results showed that young students spent the majority of their time using cognitive strategies (M = 75.26%) to read and summarise information to complete the task. Little time was taken to plan (M = 6.99%) or monitor (M = 5.92%) their work or learning processes, which are key attributes of effective self-regulation. The study reveals the disparity between the ability to navigate within a hypermedia environment and utilizing planning and monitoring processes to enhance learning while using digital tools. This study highlights the need for the explicit teaching of planning and monitoring strategies in order for young students to develop the full range of self-regulation skills they need when using technology, for instance while learning from home during COVID-19. Implications for curriculum policy and teacher practice are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages28
JournalEducation and Information Technologies
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 3 Aug 2022


  • self-regulated learning
  • COVID-19 pandemic
  • hypermedia
  • online learning
  • elementary education


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