Developing a Growth Mindset with Carol Dweck

Thank you. Today I want to tell you about
the power of “yet.” I learned in High School in Chicago where students had to pass eighty
four unity to graduate and if they didn’t pass they got the grade “not yet.” I thought,
isn’t that wonderful? Because if you fail you’re nowhere but if you get the grade “not
yet” you’re on a learning curve. “Not yet” gave them a path into the future. And “not
yet” also helped me understand a critical experience early in my career. To figure out
how kids cope with challenge, I gave ten year olds some problems that were a little too
difficult for them. Some of them reacted in a shockingly positive way. They said things
like, “I love a challenge!” or “I was hoping this would be informative!” They understood
that their abilities could grow through their hard work. They had what I would call a “growth
mindset.” But for other children it was tragic, catastrophic from their more fixed mindset
perspective their core intelligence had been tested and devastated. Instead of the power
of “yet” they were gripped by the “tyranny of now.” So what did they do next? In one
study, after a failure on a test, they said they’d cheat next time instead of study more.
In another study they found someone who did worse than they did so they could feel better.
And in many studies we found they run from difficulty. Let’s look at how that looks in
the brain. Moser and his colleagues measured from the brain as kids encountered errors.
Processing the error shows up in red. If you look at the fixed mindset brain on the left
nothing is happening. But if you look at the growth mind-set on the right it’s on fire
with “yet!” They’re processing the error deeply learning from it and correcting it. So, how
are we raising our kids? Are we raising them for a growth now or for “yet?” Are they focused
on the next “A” or test score instead of dreaming big? Instead of thinking about what they want
to be and how they want to contribute to society? And if they are too focused on “A’s” and test
scores, are they going to carry this with them into the future? Maybe. Because many
employers are coming to me and saying, “we’ve already created a generation of young workers
who can’t get through the day without a reward.” So, what can we do? How can we build that
bridge to “yet?” First, we can praise wisely. Our research shows that when we praise kids
for the process they engage in for their hard work, their strategies, their focus, their
perseverance – they learn that challenge seeking. They learn that resilience. Praising talent,
praising intelligence makes them vulnerable. There are other ways of rewarding “yet.” We
teamed up with game scientist at the University of Washington to create a math game: Brain
points. The typical math game rewards right answers, right now. But not Brain Points.
We rewarded process and the learning curve so effort, strategy and progress. The Brain
Points game created more sustained learning and perseverance than the standard game. And
just the words “yet” and “not yet” after a student has a set back we’re finding creates
greater confidence and greater persistence. We also can change students mind-sets directly.
In one study, we taught students that every time they pushed out of their comfort zone
to learn something really really hard and they stuck to it the neurons in their brain
could form new, stronger connections and over time they could become smarter. Those who
learned this lesson showed a sharp increase in their grades. Those who did not showed
a decrease. We have done this with thousands of students now across the country with similar
results. Especially for struggling students. So let’s talk about equality. In our country
there are groups of kids who chronically show poor performance and many people think that’s
inevitable. But when educators create growth mind-set environments steeped in “yet” equality
can happen”. Let me give you a few small examples. One teacher took her Harlem kindergarten class,
many of whom could not hold a pencil for the first month, threw daily tantrums, she took
them to the 95th percentile on the National Achievement Test. That same teacher took a
fourth grade class in the South Bronx – way behind – she took them to the top of New York
State on the state math test. That teacher is a Stanford grad and she’s here today. And
another Stanford grad, Phd student, now a professor, went back to her Native American
reservation in the state of Washington. She transformed the elementary school in terms
of a growth mind-set. That school had always been at the bottom of the district – at the
bottom of the state! Within a year to a year and a half, the kindergarteners and first
graders were at the top of the district in reading and reading-readiness. That district
contained affluent sections of Seattle so the reservation kids outdid the Microsoft
kids. And they did it because learning a growth mindset transformed the meaning of effort
and difficulty. It used to mean they were dumb and now it means they have a chance to
get smarter. Difficulty just meant “not yet.” Last year I got a letter from a thirteen year
old boy. He said, “Dear Professor Dweck, I read your book. I liked the fact that it was
based on sound scientific research. That’s why I decided to test out your growth mindset
principles in three areas of my life. As a result, I’m earning higher grades, I have
a better relationship with my parents, I have a better relationship with the other kids
at school. I realize I’ve wasted most of my life.” Let’s not waste any more lives because
the more we know that basic human abilities can be grown, the more it becomes a basic
human right for kids – all kids, all adults – to live in environments that create that
growth. To live in environments filled – overflowing – with “yet.” Thank you.

100 thoughts on “Developing a Growth Mindset with Carol Dweck”

  1. I feel, at least from the perspective of the England's education system that Growth Mindset has no place (though I wish it had). At best we see Growth Mindset tokenism, which I believe does nothing. These are lovely examples of teachers that brought low achieving children to the top. However, I expect there were low expectations of these children (from the outside, those that hold the teachers accountable). It sounds as though you need time for a child to reach their yet, this is not a luxury a lot of teachers have. Our government expect all children to hit certain targets. There is no time for yet. This cannot be ignored because the government made all teachers accountable for their performance making it punishable for not getting all of your children to yet at the same time. How do we get to a place where we can nurture children's Growth Mindset in such a restrictive grades focused education system? How can we NOT teach children not to focus on the grade?!

  2. I think the underlying principal that make teaachers great is the extensive care they give to a person. Lots of research is nice, but the bottom line is that a caring teacher, one who truly gives of themselves to another person, is the one that makes the difference.

  3. Continuing to be devil's advocate….

    If lifelong neural plasticity is true, why, IIRC, have all mathematical and physics geniuses done their greatest work before age 30?

  4. what is the ms mean on the graph? how do we know that red is good and green is bad? what is it measuring? brain activity?

  5. In my family, I never give negative feedback to my daughter, instead I only tell her nice things and how proud I am because she is only 10, but can manage to do simple addition such as 2+30.

  6. With growth mindset we allow ourselves to develop. We learn new ways, that allow us to become the best in what we do and even learn new skills and further our knowledge.

  7. Thank you professor Dweck, your research is enlightening and encouraging, i happen to read your book and transformed my mindset to growth which changed my life fundamentally, i was inferior and depressed, but now i can always see things in a growth manner, i don't fear setbacks and mistakes anymore, because i believe no one is born smart, we are smart through learning, experiencing, and making mistakes. Thank you again, hope one day you can come to china to let more people know your theory.

  8. I read the book mindset: The new psychology of success, in 2016 after returning from medical leave. I was greatly enlightened by this book as it gave new perspective to my life after nearly dying and giving up on my educational pursuits due to frustration of public school constructs. I shown by The Most High that my ministry was not quite complete yet after having raised two children, with spouse, utilizing a non-violent and open communication methods. They are both scholars in their prospective fields of study. I am now in the process of completing my doctoral degree in Organizational leadership: Emphasis on Special Needs Children. I thank you for your contributions to society as they have touched my life.  It is my hope that  through research and utilizing new research with application to need, many other lives will be changed for the better: One Mind at a Time!
    Thank you!

  9. We had our annual parents meeting with our school teachers yesterday, to be informed about the year's curriculum and the changes in this year (year 2) the Year 2 team are practicing 'Growth Mindset', we were shown a you tube video about it, and Carol Dweck talking about it. Myself and some other parents are really excited about it but at the crossing this morning I was shocked and appalled to hear the response of a woman when asked her opinion on 'Growth Mindset' because her evaluation of it is (probably without research even) was 'absolute tosh, there's nothing wrong with me telling my child it's brilliant and praising it's acheivements'. I had a hard time not responding, 'Nothing at all, they're already going to grow up as a narrow minded individual, just like you'

  10. 5:29 – "… similar results. Especially for struggling students. So let's talk about equality. In our country there are groups of kids who chronically show poor performance and many people think that's inevitable. But when educators create growth mind-set environments steeped in 'yet' equality can happen. Let me give you a few small examples." — Carol Dweck

    5:38 – "" — Carol Dweck

  11. Teachers! Awesome FREE lesson to have your students identifying, using and practicing growth mindset:

  12. Just a small point of correction: Marysville, WA is about 40+ miles north of Seattle, WA and have separate school districts. I don't know why this speaker feels the need to shame the children of Microsoft employees to get a laugh out of the Stanford crowd. It seems if the research was solid, the results would stand on their own without putting down other groups… whether they be Microsoft kids, affluent kids, or whatever.

  13. “Adults constantly raise the bar on smart children, precisely because they're able to handle it. The children get overwhelmed by the tasks in front of them and gradually lose the sort of openness and sense of accomplishment they innately have. When they're treated like that, children start to crawl inside a shell and keep everything inside. It takes a lot of time and effort to get them to open up again. Kids' hearts are malleable, but once they gel it's hard to get them back the way they were.”
    ― Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore

  14. Dear Professor Dweck, your research on Growth mind set is one of the most powerful tools for teachers working with learners who has fixed mind set.
    "Power of YET, praising YET", and rewarding process, strategy are amongst the most useful tools.
    Thank you for sharing these results oriented tools. Ravji Pindoria PhD London.

  15. The Tyranny of now. find someone worse. run from difficulty. Fixed mindset green Growth mind set red – it is on fire with yet. are we raising our kids for now or for yet. Generation of workers who cannot get through the day without a reward. praise widely. Praising talent . Rewarding yet.

  16. Good work(s) from Professor Carl. Your research gives hope and revives dead abilities. How can one get your personal/direct contact and book on GROWTH MINDSET? Regards.

  17. How to get views:

    1. Become a Professor
    2. Force the to watch certain videos
    3. ???
    4. Profit

    I guess it's better than having to buy their textbooks that they change every year so you cant buy a used copy.

  18. Wow! They changed so many first-graders lives! <3 I want to teach first-grade and I hope that I can make even just a little bit of a difference. <333

  19. Thanks Professor Dweck for sharing your wisdom. I have read your book "Mindset" and I love the way you have explained about the Growth Mindset. I'm so impressed by it that I have recommended this book on my blog:

  20. Great wish I had teachers taking this perspective with me growing up so you don’t label yourself as good at this bad at that really great way to think

  21. This is the gibberish that got us into the mess in the first place. You want smart kids? Have them do all their homework every day, read to them when they are young, take them to the library always and go to as many places of note as possible: Museums, plays, concerts – any kind of concert, historical places etc. IF you do that and skip all this gibberish your kids will come out as good as they can. Smart doesn't just happen, it is experience mixed with studying and no mind games will over come this.

  22. "Not yet" means nothing. Atlantis has not yet been found, alien life has not yet been discovered, and on and on with examples of things that are not just not yet, but will never be. It is a meaningless phrase in regard to accomplishment. At Warner Brothers Studios you can easily get fired for saying, "I can't". If you want to survive at WB you learn real fast to do two things, say, "I am working on it", and secondly, you better be working on it and come up with the skill or solution quick, because if you can't someone else can. Then you can answer the question, "Have you got your first unemployment check?" with a "not yet!"

  23. Here’s what’s hilarious – recent studies have completely debunked the “growth mindset” theory, and it has been proven that traits such as intelligence, talent and leadership ability are indeed inborn and cannot be “learned or cultivated.”

    Even Dweck doesn’t adhere to it anymore. She now agrees that there is no such thing as a “growth mindset” and concedes that traits are innate. You can either do something or you can’t. She does believe that we can maximize our inborn traits, but no longer believes that traits can be strengthened or improved.

  24. I’ve read her article “Brainology”. There’s one thing I’m wondering: what about the students who have both mindsets?

  25. I created an Udemy course on the Growth Mindset (for me, it is the mindset that is the foundation for any personal and professional development). Check it out:

  26. What is the difference between the words "fail" and "not yet" …they mean the same thing, so why manipulate our children with lies and mass marketing persuasion techniques?

    The problem with the word "fail" isn't the child's problem…it's the adults' problem…or it's the ADULT'S association with that word. Real Leaders and Great Teachers can apply language of any form in positive, encouraging ways.

    When will the words "not yet" become the new "fail"?

  27. The praise she mentions here is what we're trying to use at my startup,, in Zimbabwe. We give kids scholarships when we observe them displaying creative behavior that we want to encourage them to continue practicing. Any suggestions how I can measure the long term effectiveness of our scholarship program?

  28. A fixed mindset stems from the fact that a lot of students are not willing to struggle. As soon as the material gets tough and they have a hard time understanding, they throw their hands up and say something like, "Well I guess math just isn't my subject!" Then they go about their lives thinking they are just not capable of learning math (fixed mindset). The thing they don't understand is that struggling is part of learning mathematics. This is why when I teach difficult topics, I remind my students that this was a hard topic for me to grasp as well. I often share stories of me sitting in a coffee shop late at night pulling my hair out, or frantically searching youtube for someone who can dumb it down for me. This helps my students feel more comfortable with the idea of struggling and accept it as part of the process, instead of getting down on themselves. Anyone can learn math. It just takes a lot of time and perseverance.

  29. Educators! Have your students identify fixed or growth mindset in these famous examples:

  30. I love this. I just did a video on growth mindset tips avoiding the standard "meditate" or "read"… "Not yet", so powerful! ❤

  31. Watch at 2X Speed , Speed Mindset : ) , By default everyone has Growth Mindset , Outer Noise has high amplitude than Inner Voice pushing into fixed mindset. We are born with Self-learning Algorithms in our brain , which are far more sophisticated than present AI. But how we use that intelligence depending on believes we have, Educational Institutions should focus on human emotions EQ rather than improving IQ , Fear, Anxiety , Insecurity and Disappointment should be over-ridden by Gratitude, Appreciation, Compassion, Empathy and Grit , What if one uses this Growth Mindset against Humanity or for their own evil good ??

  32. Hi was just reading up on buddhism and found this that seem to discribe a person devopling his fixed mindset.
    The Five Skandhas

    The Buddhist doctrine of egolessness seems to be a bit confusing to westerners. I think this is because there is some confusion as to what is meant by ego. Ego, in the Buddhist sense, is quite different from the Freudian ego. The Buddhist ego is a collection of mental events classified into five categories, called skandhas, loosely translated as bundles, or heaps.

    If we were to borrow a western expression, we could say that "in the beginning" things were going along quite well. At some point, however, there was a loss of confidence in the way things were going. There was a kind of primordial panic which produced confusion about what was happening. Rather than acknowledging this loss of confidence, there was an identification with the panic and confusion. Ego began to form. This is known as the first skandha, the skandha of form.

    After the identification with confusion, ego begins to explore how it feels about the formation of this experience. If we like the experience, we try to draw it in. If we dislike it, we try to push it away, or destroy it. If we feel neutral about it, we just ignore it. The way we feel about the experience is called the skandha of form; what we try to do about it is known as the skandha of impulse/perception.

    The next stage is to try to identify, or label the experience. If we can put it into a category, we can manipulate it better. Then we would have a whole bag of tricks to use on it. This is the skandha of concept.

    The final step in the birth of ego, is called the skandha of consciousness. Ego begins to churn thoughts and emotions around and around. This makes ego feel solid and real. The churning around and around is called samsara — literally, to whirl about. The way ego feels about its situation (skandha of feeling) determines which of the six realms of existence it creates for itself.

    Interesting isn't it. You can

  33. I feel like all those "Ivy Legue teacher goes into a lower income area and she teaches the kids to love education and they teach her how to rap or dance or something", are all kind of based off of her.

  34. Use this to reporgram your brain and make your mindset what it needs to be to succeed. Click the Link and CHANGE YOUR LIFE!! I LIVE Is Changed FOREVER NOW and YOU CAN Change TOO!! CLICK HERE

  35. I would like to get some more information about Developing a Growth Mindset if it's possible. Can you point me in the right direction please? I would greatly appreciate it!

  36. Merci beaucoup pour cette vidéo , elle me rappelle vraiment l'état d'esprit nordique (la résilience, la persévérance).J'ai rédigé un article complet en français sur le Growth Mindset et 5 outils pour aider nos enfants à le cultiver 🙂 Thank you so much for this amazing video, I hope that this state of mind will finally develop in France. I wrote a complete article in French on Growth Mindset and 5 tools to help our children grow it :)

  37. 1-hr of growth mindset training improves GPA! Check out Prof Dweck's recent paper:

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