There is an increasing emphasis throughout higher education on the importance of autonomous learning and associated skills such as that of effective self-management. This paper suggests that the completion of a major independent project within the final year of an undergraduate degree can make an important contribution to the development of self-management/self-regulatory skills. A description of the project planning process within the BA in Applied Social Studies (by Independent Study) at the Crewe and Alsager Faculty of Manchester Metropolitan University is provided. It is argued that a theoretical account of self-regulated learning, derived from Bandura's cognitive social learning theory can provide a valuable rationale for the project planning process. It is further suggested that such a theoretical rationale has the advantage that it supports and informs the continued development of appropriate teaching strategy.