Reflections on Mindsets & the Psychology of Success


Image courtesy of  ddpavumba/
Image courtesy of ddpavumba/

Teachers expectations of students abilities in the classroom play significant roles in learner success. Likewise, learner mindsets have strong impacts in education.

The best way to realize the potential within ourselves and the potential within others, especially our learners is, to set and identify reasonable goals – not as ultimate boundaries to where you can go – but as markers of success like success criteria and learning goals; for instance to help others via sharing and collaborating.

For decades, educators have worked hard to cultivate student success within learning environments. One of the ways that this has been accomplished is with open and flexible mindsets.

There is a real call for promoting the kinds of mindsets that will help everyone to confront the new challenges that schools are facing in the 21st century. Among these challenges include staying abreast of advances in advertising, social media, and other internet-based technologies that warrant effective instruction of mathematics and the application of critical thinking skills to protect the mindsets of our youth.

Many advertisers businesses know how to tap into our mindsets and make us believe that we will be better if we only believe something different or have their product. One of the goals of education is to protect learners against indoctrination. I believe that this fight against indoctrination will be one of the biggest plights of the 21st century and education.

Much like the business sector, the education sector essentially uses a variety of programs and strategies to add significant value to the lives of all learners.  Also,comprehensive frameworks that reinforce the ability to Aquire, Manipulate, Process and Share information effectively, is also of paramount importance.

In the learning environment the only true norm is a mindset that promotes continual growth and embraces change. We as educators provide the frameworks, yet cede control to empower learners and compel them to fulfill their potential.

The psychology behind open and flexible mindsets is also about identifying where teacher understanding meets the unique ranges of experiences brought forth by the students, and then striving to blend the various talents within the classroom. In short, it is the combined skills of the educators in conjunction with the skills and strengths of the learners that create new growth potential.

The development of a comprehensive framework that fits with your personal pedagogy, however requires critical thought. It is not effective to merely believe in the power of ‘positive’ thinking about our students.

It is about recognizing strengths and weaknesses, backgrounds, and histories, and deconstructing colonial practices built into our curriculum and teaching methods that inadvertently continue to privilege the dominant populations in society.

Learners need to have the freedom to ‘want’ and strive for the things that are right for them.

Mindset psychology is indeed very important behind promoting the success of our learners.


D. McCallum

© Deborah McCallum and Big Ideas in Education, 2012-2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Deborah McCallum and Big Ideas in Education with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.



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