Mindset and the message of "yet"
Carol Dweck. A failure or an obstacle can be looked at as an opportunity for a new beginning instead of an end. This message can allow students to adopt a growth mindset, wherein they understand that their abilities, talent and intelligence will grow (as opposed to being innate and fixed), and see effort and feedback as something that will allow them to attain mastery. In a growth mindset, feedback is not seen by the student as needless criticism (as it is in the fixed mindset), but as a opportunity to learn from past mistakes. Using that information to renew their efforts, the student may also attempt new strategies and make use of other resources in order to improve their abilities and reach their goal. The growth mindset rewards effort, strategy and progress, whereas the fixed mindset is fixated on grades, correct answers and the idea of inherent abilities. The growth could help reduce students’ preoccupation with grades, because they will pay more attention to the learning process, with attaining mastery and improving their abilities being the object of their focus.
Aside from the book by Dweck, and the video links and graphics provided by the course, I find that a news search on Google of “growth mindset” found me several resources that allowed me to see more recent research on the topic, opinions of the surrounding issues and how these idea are being applied across the field of education and beyond. One blog post on Inside Higher Ed, talks not about students, but about educators and instructors who approach their curriculum and their institution with a fixed mindset. I found this interesting, because “that would never work” is a fairly common thing to hear when instructors are evaluating new ideas for their curriculum. Innovation in education depends on trying new strategies, figuring out which works and improving on them, not sticking with what is already tried and true. Another article from Inc. discussed how the leadership style of the CEO of Microsoft, Satya Nadella, encourages the growth mindset in his corporate culture. The ideas of growth and fixed mindsets have clearly expanded beyond instruction of students and have found relevance in many other fields as well.
Dweck, C. S. (2006). Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. New York: Random House.
Holmes, Nigel. Two Mindsets [Graphic]. Retrieved from http://www.nigelholmes.com/gallery/
Reed, M. (2017, October 11). Can a College Have a Growth Mind-Set? Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved from https://www.insidehighered.com/blogs/confessions-community-college-dean/can-college-have-growth-mind-set
Stanford Alumni. (2014, October 9). Carol Dweck, ‘Developing a Growth Mindset'. [Video file]. Retrieved from www.youtube.com/watch?v=hiiEeMN7vbQ
Weinberger, M. (2017, September 27). Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella's Leadership Style Is All About Encouraging a 'Growth Mindset'. Inc. Retrieved from https://www.inc.com/business-insider/microsoft-ceo-satya-nadella-leadership-style-growth-mindset-hit-refresh.html