I implemented a bunch of things to help students self-regulated their own learning last semester. I also asked students at the end of the semester what they found helpful and what they found unhelpful. I had only about a 50% completion rate, so take all of this with a grain of salt.
The most helpful assignments for students were the Mindset article by Maria Popova, the article on learning by Leamnson, and the How I got an A/How I got an F papers; none of these were overwhelming helpful, but most students who mentioned these thought they were helpful (and almost none said they were unhelpful).
I also found the How I got an A/F papers to be useful later in the semester. When students came to me mid-semester for help, I could simply ask if they were doing what they outline in the How I got an A paper (the answer was almost always “no”). The students generally seemed to find it helpful that they knew what to do, but they just weren’t doing it.
The Calendar seemed to be the least helpful to students (I had the students create a sample calendar for their first week of class, including things like classes, showers, work, and study time for each class). The students explained this by saying such things as “I already use a planner,” “I never looked at it again,” “My schedule changes every week so this wasn’t useful.”
I think that the Calendar would be salvageable if I made it a weekly assignment AND stressed that they should be scheduling in their study time (and give them a hard target for the number of study hours per class per week).
The only recurring assignment of this type was the weekly blog submission. Probably 1/3 of respondents thought it was helpful and 2/3 thought it was a waste of time (sometimes because they said that they always did it at the last minute). If I had to do it over again, I might instead require summaries of each class before the next class occurs (either electronically or on paper) so that they did this once per class, not once per week. This would definitely be smarter. I might have a weekly assignment based on the Calendar (see my points above) and/or daily tasks, but that is probably all I would do.
I am not doing any of this this semester, but that is as much a function of my only having a week of planning for this semester than anything else. I definitely need to tweak what I have done, and I didn’t have time to do it right. Many of my students last semester complained that this was busy work (although they sometimes claimed it was busy work because they would put it off until it wasn’t helpful), and I don’t want to do this again until I think my students will find it more valuable.