Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Jessica Glass Kendorski, PhD, NCSP, BCBA-D

First Advisor

Virginia Salzer, PhD

Second Advisor

Jessica Glass Kendorski, PhD, NCSP, BCBA-D

Third Advisor

Samuel Friedman, PhD


Student’s implicit theories of intelligence within higher education influences their academic performance. A two-part study was conducted to assess educator’s implicit theory of intelligence within high academia. Participants in Study 1 included instructors within higher education institutions who have been administered a Google survey inquiring about their teaching pedagogies, personal characteristics, and demographic. Results indicated that faculty, in general, hold a growth mindset about their students but also hold some fixed mindset beliefs. In addition, there were few differences between instructors from Community Colleges vs Four-Year Institutions or between Public vs Private Institutions. These results suggest that students are no less likely to be exposed to instructors who have a growth mindset if they attend Community Colleges or Public Institutions than if they attend Four-Year or Private schools. Study 2 sought to provide educators with a growth mindset intervention. A growth curriculum was developed, providing educators within higher academia the opportunity to educate their students on Carole Dweck’s concept of implicit theories of intelligence. The curriculum was developed and forwarded to instructors within higher education. Feedback was gathered from faculty who reviewed the curriculum. Of those surveyed, the vast majority reported that they would utilize the curriculum. Adjustments were made to the curriculum in response to feedback from the reviewers. These results suggest that college faculty members generally have a growth mindset but may also have some fixed mindset beliefs. This may make them more open to utilizing an intervention geared toward promoting growth mindsets in their students, such as the one developed here.