Learning Standards And High Level Of Thinking Skills

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Currently in education there is a push for teachers to have rigorous learning standards and high expectations for all their students, by challenging their students with a higher level of thinking skills. “Since the release of A Nation At Risk (National Commission on Excellence in Education, 1983) the debate about the quality of America’s schools has grown exponentially” (Blackburn & Williamson, 2009, p.1). Furthermore, with the implementation of No Child Left Behind in 2001, the discussion raised to a new level. For the first time, schools were held liable for the success of every student.
However, with an increasing amount of expectations being placed on the students to demonstrate their abilities on standardized tests, teachers feel
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“So often educators only look at a students ' ability level when predicting achievement, ignoring that the efficacies of these students play an influential role also” (Scott, 1996, p.197).
Using students’ ability as the primary predictor for students’ achievement while disregarding motivation, self-efficacy and students’ mindset is detrimental to any student, because adolescent students in middle school tend to become more “performance-oriented and less mastery-oriented than they were in elementary school” (Anderman & Mueller, 2010, p. 206). Moreover, it is particularly perilous to students who receive special education services, because for many of them it can be “a turning point towards a diminishing future” (Carnegie Council on Adolescent Development, 1989, p. 20). Adverse academic occurrences during middle school can have detrimental effects on students’ motivation to learn (Anderman & Mueller, 2010).
Chapter Two consists of a review of the literature relevant to the theories of mindset, self-efficacy, motivation, and attribution. In addition, any research that has been conducted that relates to these theories will also be reviewed in this chapter. Furthermore, there will be a review of how the
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