Self-regulation is necessary for success in any learning context, but for adult immigrants to the United States who are trying to learn English, it is critical. This qualitative research investigated 46 such learners enrolled in a blended English language course. Using Zimmerman’s 6 dimensions of self-regulation as a framework and data from observations, interviews, and reflexive journals, we attempted to understand and describe how these learners experienced self-regulation. We found that although these learners had strong desires to learn English, they lacked the self-regulation abilities that could bring their desires to fruition. They had difficulty transferring their desires to learn English into persistent motivation, effective goals, and management of time and physical environment so they could prepare for class and complete the online modules. They were more proficient in proactively using language learning strategies and creating a social network to which they could turn for help. However, in both of those areas, they did not evaluate their activities to see where they could improve. The results suggest that embedding self-regulation instruction into a language course could increase learner retention and academic success. When designing such instruction for these adult learners, designers should adapt their instruction to the type of access the students have, their culture and values, and the context of their lives.
College and Department
David O. McKay School of Education; Instructional Psychology and Technology
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Arnesen, Karen T., "Understanding Adult English Language Learners' Experience with Self-Regulation in a Blended English Language Course" (2019). Theses and Dissertations. 7607.
self-regulation, English language learners, online, blended, adult learners