School Climate & Safety Report Roundup

Study Uses ‘Growth Mindset’ to Combat Teenage Depression

By Evie Blad — September 30, 2014 1 min read

Many a nurturing parent has soothed a bullied child with a reminder that social awkwardness will change, that the bullies may one day regret it, and that people slide up and down the social totem pole throughout their lives.

New research makes a case for using that approach to combat adolescent depression, and it relies on the same core idea as research on the “growth mindset.” Growth mindset researchers have found that students’ academic achievement improves when they learn that their mind is capable of change, and that they aren’t born with fixed skill sets they can’t outgrow.

For a study published this month in the journal Clinical Psychological Science, researchers tested an intervention with 600 freshmen in three high schools. Students randomly assigned to the intervention group read a text about how “being bullied is not the result of a fixed, personal deficiency, nor are bullies essentially ‘bad’ people” and an “article about brain plasticity.” They then wrote a narrative to share with future freshmen on how personalities can change. Students in the control group read a passage on the malleability of a trait not related to personality: athletic ability.

A follow-up nine months later showed that rates of clinically significant depressive symptoms rose by 39 percent among the control-group students, in line with previous research on depression in adolescence. But the students who read about the malleability of personality showed no such increase in depressive symptoms, even if they were bullied.

A version of this article appeared in the October 01, 2014 edition of Education Week as Study Uses ‘Growth Mindset’ to Combat Teenage Depression

Events

Jobs The EdWeek Top School Jobs Virtual Career Fair
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Curriculum Webinar
How to Power Your Curriculum With Digital Books
Register for this can’t miss session looking at best practices for utilizing digital books to support their curriculum.
Content provided by OverDrive
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
Embracing Student Engagement: The Pathway to Post-Pandemic Learning
As schools emerge from remote learning, educators are understandably worried about content and skills that students would otherwise have learned under normal circumstances. This raises the very real possibility that children will face endless hours
Content provided by Newsela

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School Climate & Safety Spotlight Spotlight on Safe Reopening
In this Spotlight, review how your district can strategically apply its funding, and how to help students safely bounce back, plus more.

School Climate & Safety Interactive Which Districts Have Cut School Policing Programs?
Which districts have taken steps to reduce their school policing programs or eliminate SRO positions? And what do those districts' demographics look like? Find out with Education Week's new interactive database.
A police officer walks down a hall inside a school
Collage by Vanessa Solis/Education Week (images: Michael Blann/Digital/Vision; Kristen Prahl/iStock/Getty Images Plus )
School Climate & Safety These Districts Defunded Their School Police. What Happened Next?
Six profiles of districts illustrate the tensions, successes, and concerns that have accompanied the changes they've made to their school police programs over the last year.
Deering High School in Portland, Maine, one of two schools to have their SROs removed.
Deering High School in Portland, Maine, one of two schools to have their SROs removed.
Ryan David Brown for Education Week
School Climate & Safety Defunded, Removed, and Put in Check: School Police a Year After George Floyd
Education Week has identified 40 school districts that defunded their police after last summer's Black Lives Matter protests.
Police officer outside of a school
Collage by Vanessa Solis/Education Week (image: Bastiaan Slabbers/iStock)