Understanding of Fixed and Growth Mindset
People believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication, hard work, brains, and talent. These are just the starting point. fixed and growth mindsets are impacting students of all ages from all over the world both in positive, and negative ways. As a first-year college student, having been through many years of schooling. From all this experience, having a fixed mindset has really limited my success as a student.
Fixed mindset is the belief that everyone has a certain amount of intelligence that cannot be improved. Growth mindset is the belief that the amount of intelligence someone has can be improved by effort and education. Research shows that these two completely different mindsets have major effects on students motivation and learning. For example, in “Brainology”, by Carol Dweck, kids with a growth mindset “have a very straightforward idea of effort. the idea that the harder you work, the more your ability will grow and that even geniuses have had to work hard for their accomplishments”. Students who have a fixed mindset are afraid of challenges and disappointed by any sort of setbacks they encounter. Whereas students that have a growth mindset embrace challenges and are quick to recover when setbacks come there way.
Dweck goes on to explain that “In contrast, the students with the fixed mindset believed that if you worked hard it meant that you didn’t have ability, and that things would just come naturally to you if you did. This means that every time something is hard for them and requires effort, it’s both a threat and a bind”.
In the early 1990’s schools determined that the most crucial thing for kids that had these two different mindsets was for them to have self-esteem. Dweck continues on the topic of self-esteem by explaining that “If children felt good about themselves, people believed, they would be set for life”. For example, having self-esteem in Math and English seemed to become more important than understanding math, reading, and writing. What Dweck found was that just handing children self-esteem by telling them how bright and skilled they are seemed to be a great idea, and was well-meant, but had terrible effects.

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