A great deal of evidence suggests that human brains are remarkably plastic even in adults, and that learning new skills or information changes the structure of the brain. This module introduces students to the research supporting ‘growth mindset,’ the idea that you can increase your brainpower and ability through effort, and contrasts it with ‘fixed mindset,’ the idea that people are inherently good or bad at certain tasks, and there is little to be done about it.
The activity asks students to categorize example statements as either ‘growth’ or ‘fixed’ mindsets, and then complete a journaling exercise based on experiences in their own lives. The activity can be completed entirely out of class, or introduced in-class and the exercise assigned as homework. We recommend that this activity be used as early in the course as possible, as developing a growth mindset early on will help students engage in and benefit from later BIOMAAP activities.
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