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Self-Theories: Their Role in Motivation, Personality, and Development

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  321 ratings  ·  25 reviews
This innovative text sheds light on how people work -- why they sometimes function well and, at other times, behave in ways that are self-defeating or destructive. The author presents her groundbreaking research on adaptive and maladaptive cognitive-motivational patterns and shows:
* How these patterns originate in people's self-theories
* Their consequences for the person
Paperback, 212 pages
Published January 1st 2000 by Psychology Press (first published 1999)
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Jul 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: psychology
This book is not a self-help book. It is tedious to read, repetitive, repetitive, repetitive...BUT

It argues something of great importance - that the self-theories each of us has constructed (consciously or unconsciously) regarding our intelligence, social savviness, personality etc. initiate and control the thought patterns that can either go into fortitude or learned helplessness along the way of personal development and maturing.

To illustrate this, the author is slowly approaching (starting o
Shifting Phases
May 10, 2011 marked it as to-read
Ahah -- this is what I was looking for and didn't find in _Mindset_. Concise, lots of pointers to other interesting research.

What promotes adaptive motivation? Four beliefs and four truths about ability, success, praise, and confidence
When failure undermines and when failure motivates: Helpless and Mastery-oriented responses
Achievement Goals: Looking smart versus learning
Is intelligence fixed or changeable? Students' theories about their intelligence foster their achievement goals
Theories of
Dec 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
I learned that I see the world as an 'entity theorist'. That means that I think that intelligence is fixed and cannot change no matter how hard you work. The authors explain that raising children to be 'entity theorists' by praising their intelligence and other qualities they have no control over is a great disservice to them. They'll try to hide their inadequacies rather than work harder to master problems. It also has good arguments to make you change your mind about the limits of your own int ...more
Oct 30, 2007 rated it liked it
An excellent argument of great social value, proven in exhausting detail and repeated ad nauseam.
Jessica Smith
While I found Dweck's theories very interesting, I felt as if the book was very repetitive and biased. I understand that Dweck believes in incrementalist theory and a growth mindset, but I found some of her views on the entity theorists to be a bit harsh and judgmental. I would have preferred a more unbiased, empirical approach. ...more
Sep 23, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: parenting, pscyhology
Similar to Dweck's book Mindset. This the academic version that really lays out the research that is behind Mindset. I preferred it over Mindset. ...more
Dec 12, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Six stars. Once in a great while I'll read a book that's just...right. This is one of them. ...more
Jul 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is an excellent collection of briefs on Carol Dweck's lifetime of research. It is a bit more of a difficult read than Mindset but is for a more specific audience. The book does an excellent job of answering some of the deeper questions about growth and fixed mindsets and teases out many of the "yeah buts". The book does an excellent job of supporting arguments with extensive citations of additional research and even has a section which puts Mindsets within the context of psychological ...more
Tim Kordas
Jul 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Really a nice way to present a series of psychology experiments around how performance interacts with identity/expectations.

I originally picked this up as a "meatier version" of the trendy-last-year "mindsets."

I'm generally skeptical of popular neuroscience, and psychology books; this was well worth reading.
Fahmi Habibie
Jun 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Everything is open in my mind to develop my skill and personality. Best improvement, love it.
Yamaya Williams
Nov 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Short chapters of Dweck's research on Growth Mindset. ...more
Danica Matovic
Dec 15, 2020 rated it it was ok
This book show as that you can turn 3 chapters into 19, if you repeat the exact same thought enough times and word it differently.
Mar 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This book has changed my life.
Frank Becker
Feb 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
In diesem Buch beschreibt Frau Dweck anhand von zahlreichen Geschichten und Anekdoten die beiden Selbstbilder und ihre Auswirkung auf das Leben und Verhalten. Das ganze liest sich sehr angenehm und man kann eigentlich regelmäßig Nicken, denn: so ist es. Im Grunde macht sie "Werbung" für das dynamische Selbstbild... ;-)
Die Geschichten sind nachvollziehbar und verständlich, und decken viele Lebensbereiche ab (inklusive Beziehungen); die Hauptkonzentration liegt aber auf Sport und Lehre (Lernen bei
Apr 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
This is the academic version of Dweck's popular _Mindset_; it provides the information and citations on the research, as well as more detailed descriptions of some of her studies.

Essentially, so far, it could be seen as repetitive, if one wasn't entranced? enthralled by the the academic details. Finally, I did skip ahead to the last chapter, where she does address the relationship of her theories with others (in particular for me, I was interested in how it related to Seligman's theories that ar
Jan 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
Dweck's research is methodical and illuminating. Her book, Mindset, is a good, layperson's summary. This book walks through her studies in more detail and lays out what they've learned over the decades. At times it feels quite tedious, but the findings have important implications for educators.

Basically, she argues that we all have beliefs that lead to our personal "theory of intelligence". That theory informs the kinds of goals we have (learning or performance), concerns, response to failure, t
Lori Fritz
Jan 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
If you are a teacher you should read this book . The experimental evidence in this book makes you understand how important it is as a teacher to communicate and model the idea that 'intelligence' is something you can learn and that challenges and failures are the path to success and indeed happiness. ...more
Samantha Hines
Apr 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
highly recommended for parents attempting to establish growth mindsets in their children. Really digestible although still an academic work based in research and study. This book has lots of valuable insight into motivation and self-esteem.
It never ceases to amaze me how much we (educators) know about good practices in terms of motivating/demotivating students and yet we so easily fall back on intuition, BAD intuition time and time again.
Apr 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
Good resource for those who are do research in education or motivation. I would also recommend this book to educators and instructors as material for developing their communication, motivation and instruction skills. Parents would benefit from this book as well.

Joan Martin
This is an excellent synopsis of Dweck's ideas. It is easy to read but still substantive. A must read for any parent or teacher. ...more
Jan 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rm
I very much enjoyed this book, especially the chapters on self-esteem, relationships, and mental health. A truly worthwhile book for anyone who is around folks who are learning or facing challenges.
Lee Knowlton
Jun 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Excellent for those involved in education.
Oct 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Anything by Carol Dweck is worth reading. Developmental Psychology that is accessible and very useful
Jonathan D Kopplin
Apr 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Writing was a little dry, but the information provided within is invaluable. This book provides foundational information and research that lead to Dweck's later book, "Mindset". ...more
David Tenemaza Kramaley
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May 22, 2016
Filip Van Houte
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Jul 19, 2016
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Feb 20, 2014
Kyle Kraemer
rated it it was amazing
May 25, 2020
rated it it was ok
Aug 09, 2008
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Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., is one of the world’s leading researchers in the field of motivation and is the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professor of Psychology at Stanford University. Her research has focused on why people succeed and how to foster success. She has held professorships at Columbia and Harvard Universities, has lectured all over the world, and has been elected to the American Academy of Art ...more

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