Learning English which is the most widely used foreign language has become a necessity in globalised world. Yet, in Turkey, some problems exist about it thanks to lack of motivation and knowledge about self-regulation strategies. In this study, it was tried to explore if the students' self-regulation strategies and motivational beliefs show significant differences in terms of gender, language level, receiving English preparatory training, and the kind of high school. The research group included 320 male (65.6 %) and 168 female (34.4 %) English preparatory students at Istanbul Technical University. Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire developed by Pintrinch and De Groot (1990) and adapted in Turkish by Uredi (2005) was used as the data collection tool. Data were analysed using independent samples t-test, one-way ANOVA and the Scheffe's test via SPSS 20.0 software program. T-test findings indicated female students' cognitive strategies dimension score is higher. Yet, there are no significant differences in the students' self-regulation strategies and motivational beliefs according to receiving preparatory training. The ANOVA test's result demonstrated high school differentiation does not affect self-regulation strategies and motivational beliefs. However, the Scheffe's test results revealed the students' self-regulation, cognitive strategies and intrinsic value perception change over depending on language level. (C) 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.