How to Succeed at MIT & Beyond: Developing a Growth Mindset


Many students arrive at MIT riding on years of academic success and praise from teachers, parents, and colleagues. But what happens when you encounter uncertainty and failure? Have you been in a challenging class where you worry about how others will perceive you if don't sound "smart" enough? When you fail to achieve a specific goal, how do you manage and overcome discouragement and self-doubt? In this course, we will examine how our own notions of potential and ability can have a fundamental impact on how we approach our work, how much we learn, and how successful we can be in achieving our goals. The course will focus on recent, evidence-based insights regarding human performance, neuroplasticity, motivation and on how deliberately cultivating a "growth mindset" can improve our willingness and ability to face challenges and to innovate, despite the risk of failure.

This course is limited to 20 students and advance registration is required. Preference will be provided to MIT students. Please complete this REGISTRATION FORM. Your registration will be confirmed via a separate email from the Teaching + Learning Lab. Registration will remain open until January 13th or until all seats are filled. 


Workshop Schedule:

Session 1: The relationship between mindsets, learning, and achievement

Jan. 15, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. | Room E19-607

In this session, we will explore how beliefs about abilities and human traits relate and predict how people confront and deal with challenging academic scenarios.


Session 2: Cultivating a growth mindset

Jan. 17, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. | Room E19-607

In this session, we will explore strategies that you can use to cultivate a growth mindset, which can help individuals learn and address academic challenges more productively.


Session 3: Using deliberate practice & evidence-based strategies to improve learning

Jan. 22, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. | Room E19-607

Explore the nature of how expertise develops and discuss learning and behavioral strategies that synergize with a growth mindset to help individuals optimize learning experiences.


For questions about this workshop, please contact the instructor, Dr. Lourdes Alemán (, Associate Director for Teaching and Learning.