Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Department Chair

Jessica Glass Kendorski Ph.D., NCSP, BCBA-D

First Advisor

Virginia Burks Salzer, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

George McCloskey, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Caitlin Gilmartin, Psy.D., NCSP


Research continues to demonstrate self-regulation’s significance in almost all aspects of life, including but not limited to academic success and school adjustment. Incorporating a growth mindset into self-regulation may be a potential missing motivational component in school-based interventions. This pilot study assessed trends in survey results of whether a group of high school students who receive special education with noted difficulties in emotional regulation, organization, and consistent/timely work completion. The survey assessed whether they held a more fixed or growth mindset of self-regulation prior to intervention and whether those students' mindset of self-regulation moved towards a growth mindset of self-regulation after receiving a standardized executive functioning curriculum that included an added lesson on the growth mindset of self-regulation. The baseline survey responses suggest that more students identify with a fixed mindset of intelligence, time management, academic motivation, all-or-nothing thinking, goal setting, attention regulation, and interest in challenging tasks, but not emotional regulation, planning/organization, and autonomy of learning. Post-intervention data indicate that the intervention had the greatest impact on increasing the students’ beliefs around the malleability of intelligence but that more research is needed regarding growth mindset of self-regulation, potential interventions targeting a growth mindset of self-regulation, and the potential impact on students who struggle academically and receive special education services.