Effect of Intelligence Mindsets on Math Achievement for Chinese Primary School Students: Math Self-Efficacy and Failure Beliefs as Mediators

Frontiers in Psychology 12 (2021)
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Abstract

This study examined the relationship of intelligence mindsets to math achievement for primary school students in the Chinese educational context, as well as the mediating function of math self-efficacy and failure beliefs in this relationship. Participants included 466 fifth graders from two Chinese primary schools. Results indicated that boys had significantly higher mean levels of growth mindsets and math self-efficacy than girls, whereas boys had no statistically significant differences to girls on failure beliefs and math grade. Further, intelligence mindsets had a significant positive effect on math achievement, and failure beliefs and math self-efficacy played a full mediating role in the relationship between intelligence mindsets and math achievement. Moreover, intelligence mindsets affected math achievement through the chain mediating role of failure beliefs and math self-efficacy. These above findings contribute to advance our knowledge about the underlying mechanisms through which intelligence mindsets affect math achievement, which are of great significance to students' growth and current educational practice.

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