Early metacognitive abilities: The interplay of monitoring and control processes in 5- to 7-year-old children

Destan, Nesrin; Hembacher, Emily; Ghetti, Simona; Roebers, Claudia M. (2014). Early metacognitive abilities: The interplay of monitoring and control processes in 5- to 7-year-old children. Journal of experimental child psychology, 126, pp. 213-228. Elsevier 10.1016/j.jecp.2014.04.001

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The goal of the current investigation was to compare two monitoring processes (judgments of learning [JOLs] and confidence judgments [CJs]) and their corresponding control processes (allocation of study time and selection of answers to maximize accuracy, respectively) in 5- to 7-year-old children (N=101). Children learned the meaning of Japanese characters and provided JOLs after a study phase and CJs after a memory test. They were given the opportunity to control their learning in self-paced study phases, and to control their accuracy by placing correct answers into a treasure chest and incorrect answers into a trash can. All three age groups gave significantly higher CJs for correct compared to incorrect answers, with no age-related differences in the magnitude of this difference, suggesting robust metacognitive monitoring skills in children as young as 5. Furthermore, a link between JOLs and study time was found in the 6- and 7-year-olds, such that children spent more time
studying items with low JOLs compared to items with high JOLs. Also, 6- and 7-year-olds but not 5-year-olds spent more time studying difficult items compared to easier items. Moreover, age-related improvements were found in children's use of CJs to guide their selection of answers: although children as young as 5 placed their most confident answers in the treasure chest and least confident answers in the trash can, this pattern was more robust in older children. Overall, results support the view that some metacognitive judgments may be acted upon with greater ease than others among
young children.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Developmental Psychology
10 Strategic Research Centers > Center for Cognition, Learning and Memory (CCLM)

UniBE Contributor:

Destan, Nesrin and Roebers, Claudia


100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology








Jeannine Sebel

Date Deposited:

02 Jul 2014 10:24

Last Modified:

12 Sep 2017 03:58

Publisher DOI:






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