Carol Dweck’s ‘Growth Mindset’ Presented to Students

GCC community learns about useful learning and success tactics

Glendale Community College hosted workshops supporting its students by helping students understand more about the concept of the Growth Mindset. The Growth Mindset comes from Dr. Carol Dweck who sacrificed many years of her life for her career in analyzing motivation. She came up with the Growth Mindset after years of research led her towards believing motivation helps the occurrence of learning and growth through one’s mindset.

The Growth Mindset is about how anyone can develop a skill or skills through practice and dedication based on their level of motivation. This level of motivation helps the mindset grow by allowing one to become dedicated to consistently practicing something in order to achieve the mastering of a skill. The motivation one carries will not only allow one to learn, but it will allow one to enjoy the learning experience at the same time, hence the name, Growth Mindset.

For all students’ growth, GCC’s Learning Center has released three workshops all pertaining to the Growth Mindset. The first workshop called “Expanding Your Brain,” presents the main ideas of the Growth Mindset and how it works scientifically. It is the introduction workshop of the concept, and it is essential to understand the next two workshops.

The second workshop is called “Learning to Succeed,” and the third workshop is “Growing Your Mindset.” The second and third workshops dive deeper into the Growth Mindset by the second workshop focusing on working smarter not necessarily harder and the third focusing on the difference between having a growth mindset and a fixed mindset.

GCC’s stated goal is to help students cultivate their growth mindsets to increase their chances of success. All three workshops contain important knowledge and are very much so encouraged for all students to participate in so that the success of all is guaranteed and so that all work smarter and not just harder.

In the introduction workshop, students are split off into break rooms that allow groups of three or four students to share what they are best at doing and how they became good at whatever they described and why. These questions allowed a critical thinking process to occur, and when it came to the sharing of skills between each person in the groups, the progress was immense.

This shows the importance of the introductory workshop because one can hear real-life examples of how the growth mindset has already worked in people’s lives. The questions asked during the workshop were designed to make one think about an ability that one has grown in. Students were questioned on what they do best, how they grew in this skill or talent, and why.

The instructor clarified that the skill does not have to be an academic skill, and from there, students were split off into groups. Each student shared a different skill and this was part of the planned purpose of the workshop to show how everyone has already used the concept of the Growth Mindset to learn something they consider themselves good at.

For example, one student shared that she had always dreaded writing essays, “an experience” stemming from her high school days. She said she practiced over time and got better at writing so that she would no longer fear when she had an essay assignment.

The workshop served to educate students further on what the growth mindset is and how most of us actually use it without knowing it. GCC’s stated goal may not be met by all, however, these workshops improve the chance that many may be part of the completion of this goal.


Matthew Kouyoumdjian can be reached at [email protected].