Zimmerman outlines his personal connections to his work and motivations for engaging in this type of research, stating, “My career path to understanding the source and nature of human learning started with an interest in social processes, especially cognitive modeling, and has led to the exploration of self-regulatory processes. My investigation of these processes has prompted the development of several social cognitive models: a triadic model that synthesized covert, behavioral, and environmental sources of personal feedback, a multilevel model of training that begins with observational learning and proceeds sequentially to self-regulation, and a cyclical phase model that depicts the interaction of metacognitive and motivational processes during efforts to learn.” In this article, empirical support for each of these models is discussed, including its implications for formal and informal forms of instruction. This self-regulation research has revealed that students who set superior goals proactively, monitor their learning intentionally, use strategies effectively, and respond to personal feedback adaptively not only attain mastery more quickly, but also are more motivated to sustain their efforts to learn. Recommendations for future research are made.
Zimmerman’s work is key to MARIO’s vision of self-directed learning and the process through which metacognition and metacomprehension develop. Throughout the entire Framework, one can find echoes of Zimmerman’s discussion of the development of self-regulation.