Presentation on theme: "Preservice Teachers’ Beliefs about Intelligence and Instruction"— Presentation transcript:
1 Preservice Teachers’ Beliefs about Intelligence and Instruction Kathleen Cauley, PhDJoseph Tadlock, M.Ed.VCU School of EducationPaper presented at the MERC conference, March 13, 2012
2 Beliefs about Intelligence: Two Mindsets Fixed mindset: Intelligence is an immutable trait that leads people to demonstrate how much ability they have; Entity viewFailure means you aren’t smart; try to arrange successes and avoid failureGrowth mindset: Intelligence is a capacity that can be modified and improved with effort and persistence; Incremental viewFailure isn’t discouraging, it’s a challenge, an opportunity to learnGive the Dweck scale. Have them score it.Fixed IncrementalDemonstrate/prove self develop/willing to stretch to learn something newSensitive to mistakesFailure= not smart failure isn’t discouraging, is a challengegive up persist, improve strategiesDevalue effort (dweck saysIt’s startling the degree they don’tBelieve in effort) effort is goodPractice less study moreSelf handicapping strategiesAvoid learning/remediation willing to learn (Chinese, neuroscience studies from Dweck & Master 2005, I think)Don’t want to expose deficiencies
3 Where Do The Mindsets Come From? Parents and TeachersType of praiseType of criticismHow talk about abilityStandards used to evaluate S’sWillingness to helpHow can students gain faith in their potential???PRAISEPraise ability: fixed, reject challenge, keep doing easy stuff, failure means not smart. 40% lie about scoressays we can judge ability from a performancevs. praise effort: incremental. 90% want challenging task. Failure = try harder. Choose opportunities to learnCRITICISMperson - helpless, find fewer ways to fix the problemprocess- growthHOW TALK ABOUT ABILITYDescribe famous scientists got there by:geniushard work, dedication, passionSTANDARDScompare performance to otherscompare performance to own past performance: can see results of effortWILLINGNESS TO HELPmanagers with incremental beliefs were more likely to provide guidance, useful feedback,facilitate problem solving, inspire employees to work to potential
4 A Teacher’s Mindset Can Affect Instruction Teachers with an entity view of abilityare less likely to create autonomy supportive environments (Leroy, Bressoux, Sarrazin, & Trouilloud, 2007).may be less likely to help students,or may make decisions that enable students to demonstrate their ability such as grading on the curve or displaying highest grades,give ability praiseSo, if we believe that a growth mindset is important for students, then how do we help inculcate that with students in our classrooms?Prior research has also shown that teachers’ intelligence beliefs can influence instructional decisions
5 The ObjectiveFew studies have investigated inservice or preservice teachers’ intelligence beliefs (Dweck & Master, 2005; Jones, Bryant, Snyder, & Malone, 2011).To determine the intelligence beliefs of preservice teachers and examine the relationship between their beliefs about intelligence and their agreement with particular instructional and motivational strategies.
6 Participants138 students in EDUS 301 classes: 23% male and 77% female.62% Caucasian, 19% African American, 7% Asian, 4% Hispanic, and 7% other.Of the 138, 45% planned to teach elementary students, 6% middle school, 28% high school, and 20% didn’t plan to teach.Only the 120 students who planned to teach were selected for further study.
7 Online survey had 4 sections Theories of intelligence: 4 items from Dweck's (1999) theories of intelligence scale.Attitudes toward instructional practices: developed from work by Dweck (1999) on strategies to support incremental beliefs.A rating scale regarding autonomy supportive instructional choices, developed from work by Reeve and Jang (2006) and Jang, Reeve, and Deci (2010).4. Demographics: gender, ethnicity, and level and content participants plan to teach.
8 FindingsOn the Dweck scale, 83% of the preservice teachers indicated intelligence beliefs consistent with an incremental view.The table shows the percent agreement with each of the instructional strategies.
9 Instructional Practices Teachers shouldIncremental Beliefs% AgreeEntity Beliefsa. Display the work of students with the highest grades as examples to others38.272.1b. Provide opportunities for students to compete against one another56.266.6c. Keep everyone together with the same learning activities and assignments.47.264.7d. Insist that students redo assignments until they get it.70.8e. Avoid telling students the highest score and the average on tests.38.745.5f. When a student has an easy time with a task, apologize for assigning a task that wasn’t challenging enough to learn from1833.3g. Grade students on a curve39.353h. Praise capable students frequently with words like “you’re so smart” or “you’re brilliant”40.544.4Note that many of these allow S’s to demonstrate ability, and many with incremental beliefs endorse them.A, b, c. g.H is ability praise, and 40% of incremental endorse it!!!!Items d and e and f focus more on growth mindset.---d is good showing, but not everyone---few agree with e and f
10 Findings Regarding Autonomy When a student gets stuck99% said the teacher should offer a hint or suggestionWhen students get frustrated and complain99% would empathize and acknowledge the students’ perspectiveWhen introducing a new concept75% said students should be given enough time to figure it our in their own wayWhen a student does well on a test83% would tell the S “I can tell that you really understand this.Two possible solutions to an instructional situation were presented, one autonomy supportive and one not autonomy supportive.Of those with incremental beliefs:
11 ConclusionsWhile most preservice teachers appear to hold incremental beliefs about ability, not all do.Those who do have incremental beliefs frequently endorse instructional and motivational strategies that could engender entity beliefs in studentsThose of us in preservice education need to help our students understand the motivational effects of instructional techniques
12 ConclusionsTo develop incremental beliefs in students, it is best to emphasize effort, persistence and developing ability andMinimize techniques in grading and instruction that compare students with one another, such as grading on the curve or displaying work with the highest grade, praising ability, etc.
13 “But I really think if you focus on their development, I think the winning will take care of itself.”Shaka Smart, 3/6/2012 after winning the CAA championship.
14 ReferencesBlackwell, L., Trzesniewski, K. H., & Dweck, C. S. (2007). Implicit theories of intelligence predict achievement across an adolescent transition: A longitudinal study and an intervention. Child Development, 78(1),Dweck, C. (1999). Self Theories: Their role in motivation, personality, and development. Philadelphia: Taylor and Francis.Dweck, C. (2006). Mindset: The new psychology of success. New York: Random House.Dweck, C. and Master, A. (2005). Self-theories and motivation: Their impact on competence motivation and acquisition. In Al Elliot and C. Dweck (Eds.) Handbook of competence and Motivation (pp ). New York: Routledge.Jang, H., Reeve, J., Deci, E. (2010). Engaging students in learning activities: It is not autonomy support or structure but autonomy support and structure. Journal of Educational Psychology, 102(3),Jones, B. D., Bryant, L. H., Snyder, J. D., & Malone, D. (April, 2011). Intelligence Beliefs of Preservice and Inservice Teachers. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA.Leroy, N., Bressoux, P., Sarrazin, P., Trouilloud, D. (2007). Impact of teachers’ implicit theories and perceived pressures on the establishment of an autonomy supportive climate. European Journal of Psychology of Education, 22(4),Reeve, J. & Jang, H. (2004). What teachers say and do to support students’ autonomy during a learning activity. Journal of Educational Psychology, 98(1),