S2.10 - Self-Regulation: Self-Monitoring, Self-Evaluation & Self-Reinforcement

Self-monitoring, self-evaluation and self-reinforcement are three typical self-regulation strategies (Wehmeyer, Agran, & Hughes, 1999). Smith & Nelson (1997) assert that self-monitoring and self-evaluation are necessary skills for self-regulated behavior and Agran (1997) maintains that self-reinforcement is a key component of self-management. Each of these three skills contribute to the development of self-determination and are useful in working with the Self-Determined Career Development Model.

Self-monitoring is useful in tracking how often a behavior occurs or does not occur as part of an action plan or Phase 2. Self-evaluation, the process of comparing your behavior to a standard or goal, is especially important in determining how you did in Phase 3. Finally, self-reinforcement can be useful regardless of the phase you are working on. The consumer can self-reinforce immediately following a self-evaluation that is successful! Each of these three components is defined and described below. For additional information on self-regulation, the reader is encouraged to look over the resources contained in the reference list (Wehmeyer, Agran, & Hughes, 1999; & Whitman, 1990).

Self-Monitoring

Self-Monitoring consists of identifying a behavior or event and recording how often, how long, and/or when that behavior or event occurs (Wehmeyer, Agran, & Hughes, 1999). Self-monitoring can be an extremely useful tool for finding out how often you do certain things. You may engage in an activity much more or less frequently than you realize. Self-monitoring will help you get a much more accurate understanding of when and how often a behavior or event occurs. Two steps that comprise self-monitoring consist of identifying the behavior or event and recording the behavior or event.

Step 1: Monitor or identify that behavior

Define the behavior you want to measure so that you will always know when it did or did not occur. Consider the following suggestions:

Once you have defined the behavior or event that you want to monitor, you will need to decide how you want to monitor it.

Step 2: Recording the occurrence of the behavior

Self-recording can be extremely complicated or lots of fun. Self-recording consists of recording when a behavior occurs or does not occur. The recording can be made on a checklist or graph (Wehmeyer, Agran, & Hughes, 1999, and Agran, King-Sears, Wehmeyer, & Copland, 2003). A simple recording method is probably best. Make it simple and easy to maintain. The way you record a behavior or event will in part be determined by the definition of the behavior. Consider the following suggestions:

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Page updated 10/12/06

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