How to Help Your Learners Develop a Growth Mindset


A growth mindset focuses on teaching learners that they have the power to improve and succeed if they put effort into it. The opposite would be learners refusing to try because they don’t think they can succeed.

Teaching growth mindsets is all about modeling positive behaviors. Include a growth mindset in your lessons by finding points to discuss specific strategies that help us move toward success, plans for studying, and positive thinking.


  • Focuses on helping learners see that they have “agency” (in other words, they are capable of improving their lives).
  • Motivates learners to grow their own lives.


  • Some learners have many barriers to success. If you ignore those barriers and say, “You can work harder,” this will make learners feel disempowered. Instructors need to show learners pathways to success.
  • Ensure the content is achievable for your learners.


  1. Break down tasks into manageable pieces so that learners know the steps toward success. Then, use encouragement to motivate learners to put in the necessary effort.
  2. Celebrate success to show learners that they are competent and capable.
  3. Recognize a willingness to go after challenges and stick with them until solved.
  4. Pointe out how strategy improved achievement.
  5. Make concepts applicable not only in class but also beyond.
  6. Collect and curate examples of their success.
  7. Encourage plenty of reflection.
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