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Power of a Growth-Mindset


We have been showing Angela Duckworth's video on Grit for many years already during our orientation before they enter our program. We like to set the framework from the start that passion and perseverance can take you to the finish line(2013). We do know that just an introduction without any activities isn't the only answer. The good news for our students is that no one comes in understanding how to take x-rays or the thinking involved in imaging production. They are all in the same boat as far as new information goes. All have differing foundations but the information we are presenting is overwhelmingly brand new to the majority. The students have the opportunity to discover, explore, and collaborate together from the same starting place and then they have the opportunity to collaborate with 3 different levels of students working toward the same goal. This isn't English or math that they have been taught their entire lives. Duckworth's video even talks about the growth mindset. We reiterate that being great at radiologic technology is a learned skill not something you are born with but it must be nurtured and developed and all are capable of developing those skills.

Since joining this program, I plan to implement a grade of "not yet" as described by Dweck (2014). I have started using that verbiage in the lab space as students are producing images on phantoms and positioning real patients. I will say that I have seen a shift in the students thinking by that alone. I can imagine when I implement the theory in other areas. That is only step one, I still have to ensure that progress is being made and that they are critically evaluating the ideas and theories and not just trying hard. We don't want any false growth mind-sets(Dweck, 2014). It would be very easy to fall into that if we are not diligent is creating the opportunities. I have seen results from this in my own students so it was disconcerting to see that Kohn sees it very differently.(2015) I do teach adult learners so I think that might have something to do with why I find these tactics successful. We don't just praise effort, we give the students the opportunity to try/fail, reflect, evaluate, try again, and so on.

I also learned here about the power of demonstration and I have had to model that growth mindset also as others have mentioned. As I learn more and more about how to implement this correctly, I think the only way to keep it from being a fad is to stay in that mindset myself. I also have to stay consistent in creating opportunities described by Harapnuik for voice, choice and ownership (2019) typically, people don't cheat themselves, and if they create their own foundation for learning, cheating shouldn't be an issue. Guiding them to realize that it is the understanding and not the grade is part of that.

Dweck. C. (July 16, 2015). RSA ANIMATE: How To Help Every Child Fulfill Their Potential. Retrieve from https://youtu.be/-71zdXCMU6A

Dweck. C. (December 17, 2014).The power of believing that you can improve. Retrieve from https://youtu.be/_X0mgOOSpLU

Harapnuik, D. (April 5, 2019).How to Grow a Growth Mindset - http://www.harapnuik.org/?p=7955


Kohn, A.(August 16, 2015).The “Mindset” Mindset: What We Miss By Focusing on Kids’ Attitudes. Retrieved from http://www.alfiekohn.org/article/mindset

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