Neuro Science  








Metacognition means 'cognition about cognition'. Putting it in simpler form, 'thinking about my own thinking (i.e, my own congnition)'. It involves being aware of one's own thought processes


The prefix "meta-" comes from Greek and has multiple meanings, but in general it refers to something that is beyond, transcending.  You would have heard of this prefix pretty often from the word 'metaphysics' which is a branch of philosophy deals with 'something beyond physical object', in other words the study of the fundamental nature of reality and existence rather than what appears in physical form.


Cognition refers to the mental processes and activities related to acquiring, processing, storing, and using information. It encompasses a wide range of mental activities, including perception, attention, memory, language, problem-solving, reasoning, and decision-making.




Why Metacognition ?


One of the reasons why the term 'Metacoginition' is getting attention from many people is because it is an important aspect of learning and problem-solving, as it allows individuals to take a more active role in their own learning and to adapt their strategies based on their own experiences and feedback. It is also an important aspect of self-regulated learning, which refers to the ability to manage one's own learning and motivation. We can describe some of the reasons more specifically as below :

  • Improved Learning: Metacognition has been shown to improve learning outcomes, as it helps individuals become aware of their own cognitive processes, identify areas where they may need to improve, and develop strategies to address those areas.
  • Higher-Order Thinking: Metacognition is considered a higher-order thinking skill, which means it is a skill that goes beyond basic knowledge acquisition and involves more complex cognitive processes such as analysis, evaluation, and reflection. These skills are increasingly important in many professional fields and are highly valued by employers.
  • Lifelong Learning: In today's rapidly changing world, there is an increasing need for individuals to become lifelong learners who can adapt to new challenges and circumstances. Metacognition can help individuals become more self-directed learners who are better equipped to manage their own learning and acquire new skills and knowledge.
  • Mental Health: Metacognition has also been linked to improved mental health outcomes, as it can help individuals become more aware of their own thoughts and emotions and develop strategies for managing them.




Components of Metacognition


There are several components of metacognition in the context of learning and problem-solving. Followings are some of those components.

  • Knowledge of one's own cognitive processes: This involves understanding how one thinks, reasons, and learns, as well as being aware of one's own strengths and weaknesses in these areas.
  • Planning and goal-setting: This involves setting specific goals for learning or problem-solving tasks and developing a plan for how to achieve those goals.
  • Monitoring: This involves keeping track of my own progress towards the goal and being aware of any difficulties or challenges that arise.
  • Evaluating: This involves assessing my own performance and determining what strategies were effective and what could be improved upon for future learning or problem-solving.