Scottish Learning Festival
23 September 2009
2. Learner or Non-learner?
“I don’t divide the world into the weak
and the strong, or the successes and the
failures… I divide the world into the
learners and non-learners.”
-- Benjamin Barber
3. How do we make sure our
students remain learners?
4. Mindsets Matter
Fixed Mindset: Intelligence is a fixed
Growth Mindset: Intelligence is a
malleable quality; a potential that can
…Talent is a starting point
5. Mindsets Matter
• Which mindset is correct?
• Does a person hold the same mindset
in different life arenas?
• Can mindsets be changed?
6. How Do Mindsets
The Mindset Rules
7. Mindset Rule #1
LOOK CLEVER AT ALL COSTS
LEARN, LEARN, LEARN
8. Looking Clever vs. Learning
Fixed Mindset Student:
“The main thing I want when I do my school
work is to show how good I am at it.”
Growth Mindset Student:
“It’s much more important for me to learn
things in my classes than it is to get the best
Blackwell,Blackwell, TrzesniewskiTrzesniewski, &, & DweckDweck, 2007, 2007
9. Math Achievement
10. Pre-Medical Students
11. Organic Chemistry Grades
12. Learners and Non-Learners in
How do mindsets control our attention?
MangelsMangels, Butterfield, Lamb, Good &, Butterfield, Lamb, Good & DweckDweck, 2006, 2006
“Who was the Union general
at the battle of Gettysburg?”
1.5 s 2 s
Paying Attention to Learning
Think about a time you were in a fixed
mindset and chose to be a non-learner.
What could you do differently in the future?
15. Mindset Rule #2
IT SHOULD COME NATURALLY
“To tell the truth, when I work hard at my school
work it makes me feel like I’m not very smart.”
WORK HARD, EFFORT IS KEY
“The harder you work at something, the better
you’ll be at it.”
16. Do Geniuses Work--
Or Does it Just Come Naturally?
17. Mindset Rule #3
IN THE FACE OF SETBACKS…
CAPITALIZE ON MISTAKES
18. Deficiency Equals…
19. After Setback
“I’d spend less time on this subject from now
“I would try not to take this subject ever again.”
“I would try to cheat on the next test.”
“I would work harder in this class from now on.”
“I would spend more time studying for the tests.”
Blackwell, Trzesniewski and Dweck, 2007
20. Fixed Mindset provides no recipe
for recovering from failures:
• Giving up, retreating to comfort zone
• Blaming others
• Trying to feel superior
21. Where Do Mindsets
Our language tells students what we
believe and what we value
22. NonNon--Verbal IQ TestVerbal IQ Test
23. Messages About What We Value
• Intelligence Praise: “Wow, that’s a really
good score. You must be smart at this.”
• Effort (Process) Praise: “Wow, that’s a
really good score. You must have tried
Mueller & Dweck, 1998
24. Intelligence vs. Effort Praise
• Mindset: Fixed vs. Growth
• Goals: Looking smart vs. Learning
After Difficult Trial:
• Confidence: Low vs. High
25. Number of problems solved on
Trial 1 (before failure) and
Trial 3 (after failure).
Trial 1 Trial 3
Students who misrepresented their scores
Intelligence Control Effort
Type of Praise Given
27. What to Praise
• Effort, struggle, persistence despite
• Strategies, choices
• Choosing difficult tasks
• Learning, improving
28. Low Effort Success: Yesterday
• Look, you got an A without really
working. You’re really good at math!
• You did that so quickly and easily. That’s
29. Low Effort Success:Tomorrow
• You got an A without working. You must
not be learning much.
• You did that so quickly and easily. I’m
sorry I wasted your time. Let’s do
something you can learn from.
What is one thing you could do differently in
your interactions with your students or staff
to foster a growth mindset?
31. Changing Mindsets
32. A Mindset Workshop
• Growth Mindset Group: 8 sessions of
study skills + the growth mindset.
• Control Group: 8 sessions of great study
33. Math Grades
(Blackwell, Trzesniewski, & Dweck)
41. Have you changed your mind about
• My favorite thing from Brainology is the
neurons part where when u learn something
there are connections and they keep
growing. I always picture them when I’m in
• Yes … I imagine neurons making
connections in my brain and I feel like I am
learning something. (biggie)
A growth mindset allows students to:
• Embrace learning and growth
• Understand the role of effort in creating
• Maintain confidence and effectiveness in
the face challenges and setbacks
…and it can be taught.
43. One Final Note
A Growth Mindset for Educators Too
• As educators, we must constantly learn and
• Educators, too, need permission to learn and
• If we don’t fulfill our potential how can we
make our the students fulfill theirs?