What techniques will help Alexandra and Zach become independent learners, and how can they gain those skills?
Page 4: Self-Monitoring
Self-monitoring is a strategy that teaches students to self-assess their behavior and record the results. Though it does not create new skills or knowledge, self-monitoring does increase or decrease the frequency, intensity, or duration of existing behavior. It also saves teachers time monitoring students’ behavior.
Benefits for All Students
- Self-monitoring provides more immediate feedback to students than is possible when teachers evaluate the behavior.
- The strategy clearly depicts improvement over time in behavior for both the student and the teacher.
- The self-monitoring process engages students.
- Self-monitoring facilitates communication between students and their parent.
- Students can avoid competition because of the individual nature of the strategy.
- Self-monitoring incorporates academic and social skills (e.g., counting, reading, classifying, cooperating).
- The strategy increases students’ awareness of their own behavior.
- Self-monitoring produces positive results.
(Moxley, 1998; Rock, 2005)
Benefits for Students with Disabilities
In addition to the benefits described above, studies on self-monitoring with students with disabilities in inclusive classroom settings have demonstrated positive changes in the following behaviors:
- Social behaviors and completion of written classroom work at the high school level
- The ability to follow directions in junior high school classes
- Less aggressive behavior
- Academic engagement and fewer disruptive behaviors for elementary-age students
- On-task behavior, less disruptive behavior, and listening skills for grades 7 through 9
- Math fluency
(Gumpel & Shlomit, 2000; Hughes, Copeland, Agran, Wehmeyer, Rodi, & Presley, 2002; McDougall & Brady, 1998; Rock, 2005; Wehmeyer, Yeager, Bolding, Agran, & Hughes, 2003)
Though self-monitoring can be used in many ways for many different behaviors, this module will focus on two of the most common and easiest to use. These are self-monitoring of attention (SMA) and self-monitoring of performance (SMP).
Before Ms. Torri implements these self-monitoring strategies with Alexandra and Zach, she needs to review the five steps in the self-monitoring process.
Steps in Self-Monitoring
Teaching students to self-monitor is a straightforward process. The steps below are the ones teachers should use, and we’ll discuss each of them in turn.
|Steps in Self-monitoring|
|Step 1||Select a behavior to self-monitor|
|Step 2||Collect baseline data|
|Step 3||Obtain willing cooperation|
|Step 4||Teach the procedures|
|Step 5||Monitor independent performance|
Now that Ms. Torri is familiar with the steps in the self-monitoring process, she is ready to implement this strategy with Alexandra and Zach.
Click on the movie below to see how Ms. Torri implements SMA with Alexandra (time: 2:57).
SMP with Zach
Zach hates math. He’d much rather think about riding his bike than practice math, which in turn means that his scores on daily class assignments are poor. He knows his math facts fairly well, but because his assignments are rarely complete he almost never makes passing scores on them.
Click the pictures below to help Ms. Torri implement self-monitoring with Zach to improve his math performance. Bob Reid, PhD, University of Nebraska, an expert in this field, will offer feedback for each step.