Little research has been found to study the direct association between learner autonomy and cognitive flexibility. The current study hypothesized that there would be a positive correlation between learner autonomy and cognitive flexibility. In order to examine the hypothesis, participants’ scores on Autonomous Learning Scale (ALS) and their scores on Cognitive Flexibility Inventory (CFI) were analyzed. What is more, participants were asked to complete Wisconsin Card Sorting Task (WCST), which is a classical neuropsychological test to measure people’s cognitive flexibility and the scores on ALS were also analyzed with numbers of perseverative errors and random errors on WCST. The results showed that there was a positive association between the scores on ALS and scores on CFI. Also, it was found that the scores on ALS was inversely correlated to the numbers of random errors but not perseverative errors. It can be concluded that people with higher levels of learner autonomy have better cognitive flexibility. This study might have implications for the field of both teaching and education policy. Teachers should pay extra efforts in class to promote students’ learner autonomy and education policymakers should implement policies that can assist in developing the sense of learning autonomy. In this case, students’ cognitive flexibility can also be enhanced, which benefit them in both short term and long term


Abraham, Ashley




Educational Psychology | Psychology


Autonomous Learning, Cognitive Flexibility

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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