A framework for using learning theories to inform ‘growth mindset’ activities


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Dono: Marcos Pedroso

Versão: 1.0

Última Atualiz.: 09-01-2019 9:11


The social psychology theory of fixed and growth mindsets offers
one reason for observed underachievement in science, technology,
engineering and mathematics (STEM), particularly for students who
have previously excelled in these disciplines. Fixed mindset beliefs
are linked to behaviours that can lead to avoiding challenges and
reduced learning, such as concealing a lack of understanding to
retain an image of being ‘smart’. The potential impact of a growth
mindset on STEM achievement, particularly for minority and lowhousehold-income
students, resulted in calls to develop interventions
that encourage growth mindsets and discourage fixed mindsets.
However, education interventions are influenced by the educator’s
understanding of how learning occurs. A framework to show
how activities based on different learning theories may encourage
growth mindsets or (unintentionally) encourage fixed mindsets
can guide the developers of growth mindset interventions. We
present such a framework in six tables relating to key areas associated
with growth and fixed mindsets: dealing with challenges,
persistence, effort, praise, the success of others and learning goals.
Each table gives examples of learning activities that may encourage
growth or fixed mindsets, fitting with each of four key learning
theories: behaviourism, constructivism, communities of practice and

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