Research has shown a bi-directional association between the (perceived) amount of invested effort to learn or retrieve information (e.g., time, mental effort) and metacognitive monitoring judgments. The direction of this association likely depends on how learners allocate their effort. In self-paced learning, effort allocation is usually data driven, where the ease of memorizing is used as a cue, resulting in a negative correlation between effort and monitoring judgments. Effort allocation is goal driven when it is strategically invested (e.g., based on the importance of items or time pressure) and likely results in a positive correlation. The current study used a meta-analytic approach to synthesize the results from several studies on the relationship between effort and monitoring judgments. The results showed that there was a negative association between effort and monitoring judgments (r = − .355). Furthermore, an exploration of possible moderators of this association between effort and monitoring was made. The negative association was no longer significant when goal-driven regulation was manipulated. Furthermore, it was found that the type of monitoring judgment (i.e., a weaker association for prospective judgments) and type of task (stronger association for problemsolving tasks relative to paired associates) moderated the relation between effort and monitoring. These results have important implications for future research on the use of effort as a cue for monitoring in self-regulated learning.

Effort . Monitoring . Cue utilization . Meta-analysis. Metacognitive judgments
Educational Psychology Review
Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Baars, M.A, Wijnia, L, De Bruin, A.B.H., & Paas, G.W.C. (2020). The relation between student’s effort and monitoring judgments during learning: A meta-analysis. Educational Psychology Review, 32, 979–1002. Retrieved from