Adolescent Perceptions of Parent’s Failure and Intelligence Mindsets Public Deposited

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  • Hayden, Jessica
    • Affiliation: School of Education, School Psychology
  • Children’s beliefs about the stability of intelligence (intelligence mindset) has been found to influence motivation and academic achievement (e.g., Blackwell, Trzesniewski, & Dweck, 2007; Romero, Master, Paunesku, Dweck, & Gross, 2014; Claro, Paunesku, & Dweck 2016). Messages parents communicate to their fourth and fifth grade children about academic failure have been found to be more predictive of their children’s intelligence mindset than messages about their beliefs about intelligence (Haimovitz & Dweck, 2016). While this may be true for elementary students, research on the influence of parent beliefs about intelligence and failure has not been explored in adolescent populations. The current exploratory study addresses gaps in past research by examining relationships between adolescent self-reported beliefs about intelligence, achievement goal orientation, academic self-efficacy, and academic outcomes; and their perceptions of their parent’s beliefs about intelligence, failure, and achievement goal orientation, as well as their experiences of dissonance in terms of feelings of discomfort due to differences in values, beliefs, and behavioral expectations between home and school. Students (N = 145) in a sixth to twelfth grade rural charter school, were surveyed about their beliefs, and what they perceived their parents to believe. Findings revealed significant associations between perceptions of parent intelligence mindset and adolescent intelligence mindset in all grades except eighth and twelfth. Students endorsing strong beliefs that intelligence can’t change, were also likely to view their parents as having strong beliefs that failure is debilitating to the learning process and strong beliefs that intelligence can’t change, but the beliefs of older students were not as strongly associated with the beliefs they perceived their parents to hold. Adolescent intelligence mindset (growth and fixed) was not a significant predictor of academic outcomes, nor were the perceptions of parent beliefs about mindset (failure and intelligence). However, after controlling for demographic factors, perception of dissonance between home and school and academic efficacy, were found to play a significant role in academic achievement. Findings have implications for education of adolescents and the role of parent influences on adolescent intelligence mindset and academic achievement.
Date of publication
Resource type
  • Simeonsson, Rune J
  • Evarrs, Sandra
  • Frederick, Helyne
  • Mackey, Brian
  • Marraccini, Marisa
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2020

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