Metacognition and Language Learning: Creating Effective K–12 Learners

  • Stacey Hernberg University of Calgary
Keywords: Metacognition, Strategies, Awareness, Instruction, English Language Learners, Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency


In British Columbia’s K–12 schools, five years of funded English Language Learning support is frequently not enough to help English language learners fully develop their English language proficiency. This critical analysis examines the literature on metacognition and language learning to find practical metacognitive instructional features to equip students who are learning English as an additional language with the awareness and the strategies they need to effectively further develop their academic language. By analyzing and synthesizing the literature, it is clear that several models of metacognition have been developed. Yet, there is still a need for a fuller model to be developed, thus helping educators better understand how metacognitive instruction can be implemented. Furthermore, little research can be found on metacognitive instruction with K–12 language learners. Therefore, theme analysis for effective features of metacognitive instruction with post-secondary language learners was used to uncover the most useful characteristics which might prove promising for K–12 students in British Columbia. The result is the identification of four features of effective metacognitive instruction that could be used in conjunction with a proposed fuller model of metacognition in language learning.

How to Cite
Hernberg, S. (2020). Metacognition and Language Learning: Creating Effective K–12 Learners. BC TEAL Journal, 5(1), 109-122.