Metacognition in the mathematics classroom: an exploration of the perceptions of teachers and students in secondary schools in Saudi Arabia
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
Reason for embargo
This study aimed to explore teachers’ and students’ perceptions of metacognition in relation to mathematics teaching and learning in secondary schools in Saudi Arabia. This research adopted an interpretive paradigm. This meant that a socio-cultural perspective was central to examining perceptions of metacognition in relation to mathematics among secondary students and their teachers in Saudi Arabia. The use of case studies was a methodical means to achieve elaborate data and to shed light on issues facing the study. The instruments used for data collection were semi-structured interviews, group discussions and classroom observation. The participants consisted of two case study classes from secondary schools in Saudi Arabia. There were three stages of the study’s fieldwork: the pilot study and the two subsequent stages which comprise the main body of fieldwork. These last two stages were carried out in order to enable the formulation of a clearer and more complete picture of mathematics teaching and learning through metacognition in Saudi Arabia, before and after the implementation of the IMPROVE programme, regardless of improvements in specific strategy or any boost to students’ achievement. Several findings were drawn from the data, the first of these being that the traditional method can hinder mathematics teaching and learning through metacognition. Secondly, although metacognitive mathematics instruction should be planned, the strategy that is introduced should be directly targeted at improving the monitoring and regulation of students’ thought when dealing with mathematics problems. Thirdly, metacognition should be given priority to improve students’ consciousness of the learning processes. This is because conscious reflection enables students to develop an ability to choose the most appropriate strategies for learning concepts and solving mathematics problems. The findings underlined the importance of the student’s role in learning through metacognition. The study presented a perspective for dealing with metacognition along with a practice-based model of metacognitive mathematics teaching and learning. These are in the educational context of Saudi Arabia and are set out after the implementation of the IMPROVE programme. In addition, this study asserts that metacognition can be enhanced through the creation of a suitable socio-cultural context that encourages the social interaction represented through cooperative learning.
PhD in Education