Metacognitive knowledge and domain-specific prior knowledge among secondary school students: A longitudinal study to assess the developmental trajectories between these knowledge components.

Applicants: Schneider, Wolfgang & Artelt, Cordula

Co-Workers: Lingel, Klaus & Neuenhaus, Nora


To assess the developmental dynamics between domain-specific prior knowledge (in the domain of German, English and mathematics) and metacognitive knowledge in secondary school students, a longitudinal study was planned. A sample of approximately 600 Bavarian pupils, equally covering all mayor academic tracks, will be tested in intervals of approximately 9 months beginning in the first weeks of grade five.

The assessment of domain specific knowledge (competence in German, English, and mathematics) will take into account requirements of longitudinal assessment by linking instruments over time. The instruments will also be representing class level and subject specific curricular.

For the assessment of meta-cognitive knowledge (regarding text comprehension, English and mathematics), existing instruments will be advanced, modified and finally piloted to cover the age specific competences adequately.

The main objective of this longitudinal study is twofold. First, we intend to investigate inter-individual differences in domain-specific prior knowledge, intelligence, and metacognitive knowledge and their impact on student’s achievements in the subjects of German, English and mathematics. Second, we intend to investigate the relevance of intra-individual changes in prior knowledge and metacognitive knowledge on student’s achievements in the same three subject domains We assume that achievement gains are determined by general competencies (such as metacognitive knowledge) as well as by domain specific prior knowledge (competencies in German, English, and mathematics). In the course of time we expect a declining influence of general components because pupils become increasingly experienced and knowledgeable in the domain specific fields.