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The purpose of this phenomenological study is to understand “What are the lived experiences of online professional graduate students who utilize metacognitive study strategies for course success?”. Professional graduate learners make up a large population of online students. Often, these students have not attended courses beyond secondary education and have been in the workforce. The conducted study followed a course of graduate students in a master’s program who had been provided with metacognitive study strategies module. The study analyzed the use and effectiveness of the study strategies, along with interviewing the participants about their degree of understanding, their use of strategies, and their connection to their perception of success. Bandura’s cognitive learning framework was used to explore the connection between metacognition and online learning success as perceived by the student and to provide support and show the importance of incorporating metacognitive study strategies into the online learning environment to increase self-regulated learning, motivation, agency, and connection to learning and understanding of course content. This study looked at the experiences of professional graduate learners using metacognitive study strategies and how they perceived success. Seven themes were found in the coding of the interviews. The participants reported using some of the strategies and learning new ways to connect the course content to their current and previous knowledge. Participants in the study were 80% female and 20% male. Eighty percent of the participants stated they viewed the PowerPoint in the module and 60% viewed the video. Results show 100% of the participants report asking and answering questions in the discussion to gain additional insights and to receive feedback from peers and the instructors, which may be a sign some students are more visual learners and 80% reported starting home work early as connected to the theme of time management. Included is also discussion on the importance of future research on metacognitive study strategies in online learning environments.

First Advisor

Karen Card

Research Area

Educational Administration