Interpersonal and collaborative activity plays an important role in the social aspects of self-regulated learning (SRL) development. Peer, teacher and group interactions facilitate support for self-regulation, co-regulation and socially shared regulatory processes. Situated and experiential interplay facilitates personal, co-constructed and collaborative learning behaviours, shaping SRL, feedback and the internalising of modelled cognitive processes. Using interpretative phenomenological analysis this qualitative study of six prominent Australian improvising musicians explores independent and collectively shared regulatory processes. Expert musicians’ beliefs, understandings and processes in improvised music-making were investigated revealing strategies gained from practice, training and experience. The findings suggest that context situated independent, co-operative and collaborative regulatory processes shape learning, motivation and dispositions through complex cognitive and dynamic task-specific processes. Implications drawn from knowing and understanding expert improvisers’ learning suggest the tailoring of educational modules that provide authentic experiences and develop expert level independent critical thinking and creative processes.