I’ve written a lot about Carol Dweck’s work on a “fixed” versus “growth” mindsets, as have many other people.
Today, though, I learned through a very interesting post at psySociety that there’s also another term used to describe the two perspectives — entity theorist (fixed) and incremental theorist (growth).
That’s interesting, but that’s not really why I’m writing about that post. It’s titled “Olympic Greatness: Biology or Motivation?” and does an exceptional job explaining that genetics obviously has a role in a person’a success, but that motivation can nevertheless take you a long way. Here’s an excerpt:
However, one might note that it’s not necessarily a “this-or-that” distinction. There is a chance that people could hold both entity and incremental theories about ability. As Richard Schmidt wrote in Motor Control and Learning, “abilities represent the collection of ‘equipment’ that one has at his or her disposal and limit the effect of learning on performance.” Essentially, this view states that abilities are determined by genetics and can be described as something you are “born with,” but you can still greatly improve your skills by working hard.
The post is illustrated by this Nike commercial, which many of us have probably seen during the Olympics. I’m adding this post to The Best Resources For Learning About The 10,000 Hour Rule & Deliberative Practice.