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Increasing Student Motivation and Engagement Using a Mindset Approach: Strategies for Your Curriculum David Valentiner Northern Illinois University.

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Presentation on theme: "Increasing Student Motivation and Engagement Using a Mindset Approach: Strategies for Your Curriculum David Valentiner Northern Illinois University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Increasing Student Motivation and Engagement Using a Mindset Approach: Strategies for Your Curriculum David Valentiner Northern Illinois University

2 Presentation Outline A Request Rationale and Empirical Basis – Introduction to the theory – Selective review of the evidence -- four studies Feedback Strategies for your curriculum – Curriculum modules – Shifting the paradigm – Building your own curriculum

3 Strategies to Promote a Growth Mindset From the first study, “Brainology” includes a six-session online tutorial on cognitive neuroscience, supplemented with in-class activities and homework assignments. From the second study, the Malleable Pen Pal condition involved three 90-minute sessions in which individual writes letters to a younger student. From the fourth study, the Incremental Theory condition involved a semester-long process of designing a webpage advocating an incremental mindset.

4 Something Less Cumbersome One minute session Uses the “saying is believing” paradigm Orient students to the task of advocating for a growth mindset. Instruct them to not evaluate whether it is true or not. Present information to help them.

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7 Presentation Outline A Request Rationale and Empirical Basis – Introduction to the theory – Selective review of the evidence -- four studies Feedback Strategies for your curriculum – Curriculum modules – Shifting the paradigm – Building your own curriculum

8 Other resources Dropbox folder Pert.net Mindsetworks.com Ongoing consultation ( , phone, etc.)

9 Shifting the paradigm Mindset beliefs are self-maintaining Like other implicit beliefs – Outside of awareness – Sometimes at odds with explicit beliefs – Guide attention, interpretation, and behavior – Transmitted through media, person-to-person Change the behavior to change the belief

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11 Growth Mindset The goal is to look smart: “I want to show how smart I am.” Effort is seen as negative : “If you have to work hard, it means that you are not very smart.” The goal is learning: “It’s more important to learn than it to get the top grade.” Effort is seen as positive : “The harder you work, the better you’ll be at it.” Fixed Mindset

12 Growth Mindset Response to failure: “I don’t want to do this;” “I don’t like this class;” and “This isn’t fair – I am going to cheat.” Intelligence Praise: “Wow, that’s a really good score. You must be smart at this.” Response to failure: “I will work harder in this class;” “I will spend more time studying for the tests.” Effort Praise: “Wow, that’s a really good score. You must have tried really hard.” Fixed Mindset

13 Growth Mindset Low Confidence Low Motivation Decreasing Performance High Confidence High Motivation Increasing Performance Fixed Mindset

14 Growth Mindset Praise effort (not achievement or performance) Talk about acquiring knowledge and developing skills (not demonstrating ability) – “show me what you have learned” versus “show me how good you are at this” Focus on the task (not the person) – Self-focus contributes to a breakdown in automatized cognitions and behaviors (i.e., choking) Emphasize formative (not summative) evaluation Describe role models efforts (not gifts)

15 Shifting the paradigm Other beliefs relevant to mindset beliefs – Intelligence is stable – Group differences – Some students can’t learn this material – Some people are just naturals at this – Some people are not cut out for this – Some of these things can’t be learned Adoption of a growth mindset is a teaching strategy.

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17 Presentation Outline A Request Rationale and Empirical Basis – Introduction to the theory – Selective review of the evidence -- four studies Feedback Strategies for your curriculum – Curriculum modules – Shifting the paradigm – Building your own curriculum

18 Mindset constructs Peer relationship mindset Personality mindset Shyness mindset Morality mindset Weight mindset Negative affect mindset

19 Selecting a mindset construct Consider the specific course curriculum (e.g., math skills for a math class, biology knowledge for a biology class, etc.) Consider how students actively engage with the curriculum and develop a sense of belongingness Entry and gatekeeping courses might target professional identity (e.g., engineering can be learned; most students in this class who work hard can become an engineer)


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