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The Effects of a Growth Mindset Intervention on the Beliefs About Intelligence, Effort Beliefs, Achievement Goal Orientations, and Academic Self-Efficacy of LD Students With Reading Difficulties

Baldridge, Mary Caufield
Thesis/Dissertation; Online
Baldridge, Mary Caufield
Esposito, James
Driscoll, Daniel
The overall purpose of this study was to examine the effects of a "growth mindset" intervention on the beliefs about intelligence, effort beliefs, achievement goals, and academic self-efficacy of learning disabled (LD) students with reading difficulties. The treatment group consisted of 12 high school LD students with reading difficulties. This was a mixed methods study examining pretest and post test survey responses utilizing descriptive statistics and analyzing qualitative data: class discussions, student interviews, journal responses, and unit quizzes, through themes and coding. Two surveys were used to measure theory of intelligence, effort belief, achievement goal orientation, and academic self-efficacy. Qualitative data was examined for belief in an incremental theory of intelligence and positive effort belief. Student survey responses were also examined for group pretest-posttest difference by gender and class placement (teamed/self-contained). This was an exploratory study. Inferential statistics were not used. Student survey answers did not reveal a strong pattern of positive motivational change after the intervention. Slight posttest group mean increases were noted in theory of intelligence, mastery goal orientation, performance approach goal orientation, and academic self-efficacy. Qualitative analyses verified students' absorption of the concept that the brain changes with learning and that learning increases intelligence through Brain plasticity. Student comments indicated confusion about survey questions and dissatisfaction with some aspects of the "growth mindset intervention." Gender differences were observed in pretest and posttest survey responses. Class placement differences (teamed/self-contained) were observed in pretest and posttest survey responses, and in response to the intervention. Further study on the effects of a "growth mindset" intervention on high school LD students with larger samples, more extensive treatments, and control groups are recommended to clarify effects.
University of Virginia, Curry School of Education, EDD (Doctor of Education), 2010
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EDD (Doctor of Education)
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