Effects of a parental growth mindset intervention on parent beliefs, and children's mindsets and academic outcomes: Evidence from a randomized controlled trial in Norway

Last registered on August 30, 2022

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Effects of a parental growth mindset intervention on parent beliefs, and children's mindsets and academic outcomes: Evidence from a randomized controlled trial in Norway
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0009181
Initial registration date
August 08, 2022

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
August 09, 2022, 4:58 PM EDT

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.

Last updated
August 30, 2022, 12:43 AM EDT

Last updated is the most recent time when changes to the trial's registration were published.

Locations

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Primary Investigator

Affiliation
University of Stavanger

Other Primary Investigator(s)

Additional Trial Information

Status
In development
Start date
2022-08-22
End date
2035-06-30
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Abstract
People who believe their intelligence and abilities can be developed over time have growth mindsets, while those that believe they cannot be developed, have fixed mindsets. Students with growth mindsets are predicted to perform better in academics, and to have higher psychological well-being compared to other students. Research suggest that student’s mindsets are malleable, and that level of growth mindset and academic performance can be increased through low-cost and easily scalable interventions. However, there is a lack of studies that focus on how we can support parents to promote the development of growth mindset in their children.

I will examine whether parents can learn to foster their children’s growth mindsets through an online intervention. Families with children in 1.-3. grade will be recruited through schools, and randomized to control or treatment within classrooms. I will investigate treatment effects on the parents and their children. For parents I will investigate the impact on their theory of intelligence; belief about fixedness of ability; perceived parental impact; failure mindset; praise mindset; criticism mindset; and challenge mindset. For the children I will investigate the impact on their growth mindset; epistemic curiosity (parent perceived); and arithmetical facts.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Sagen, Espen. 2022. "Effects of a parental growth mindset intervention on parent beliefs, and children's mindsets and academic outcomes: Evidence from a randomized controlled trial in Norway." AEA RCT Registry. August 30. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.9181
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Both the treatment and control has four sessions. All sessions are done online. The sessions are released every other week.

TREATMENT:
In session 1 we explain how important parents are to the development of their child. We also teach them about the malleability of the brain, and how children learn while working on challenging tasks. In session 2 the parents learn about how failure is normal, and how they can support their children to view mistakes as a learning opportunity instead of defeat. In session 3 we explain the difference between process- and person-feedback, and how process-feedback will help their children become better learners. In weeks 1-3 the sessions end with a specific activity the parents can use to foster the desired behavior explained in the session. Session 4 contains a summary of the previous weeks.

CONTROL:
In session 1 the participants learn about how the brain develops from childhood to adulthood, and that children do not have the same capabilities to plan and concentrate as adults, as these skills are still in development during childhood. In session 2 they learn about how they can support their children's ability to plan - they receive two activities that they can use for this purpose. In session 3 the topic is concentration, and the parents learn one activity that they can do to support their child's ability to concentrate. Session 4 contains a summary of the previous weeks.
Intervention Start Date
2022-08-22
Intervention End Date
2022-12-31

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
CHILDREN:
- Growth mindset and growth mindset by proxy (Ruzek et al. 2020)
- National screening tests in math and reading
- National tests in math and reading
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
PARENTS:
- Theory of intelligence (Dweck, 2008)
- Perceived parental impact (Boivin et al., 2005)
- Failure mindset (Haimovitz and Dweck, 2016)
- Beliefs about fixedness of ability (Muenks et al., 2015)

CHILDREN:
- Academic self-concept (Ruzek et al. 2020)
- Curiosity (Ruzek et al. 2020)
- School enjoyment (Lichtenfeld et al., 2012)
- The Behavioral Rating Scale of Presented Self-Esteem for Young Children (items 1, 3, 4, 5, 12, 13 and 14) - parent evaluated (Haltiwanger & Harter, 2019)
- Arithmetical facts (Klausen & Reikerås, 2016)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We collaborate with school to recruit parents to join the experiment. The school sends out invitations to all parents with children in 1.-3. grade in fall of 2022. The parents then have to sign-up online to participate in the experiment.

All participating parents receive four online sessions. The sessions are released every other week. The treatment group receives the parental growth mindset intervention, while the control group receives information of children's brain and skill development. All sessions are delivered through Qualtrics. The parents can choose whether to use a phone, tablet or laptop to complete the sessions.

Parents baseline measures are gathered just before the first session, and the parents post-intervention measures are gathered right after the last (fourth) session.

In January and February of 2022 we will go to the school to administer the arithmetic facts test and the gather the children's administer the survey for the children. The children will complete the arithmetic facts test on paper, and the survey will be answered through the children's school Chromebooks, using Mentimeter.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
The parents are randomized in Qualtrics to control or treatment after signing up online.
Randomization Unit
Family (child)
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
800 children
1000 parents
Sample size: planned number of observations
800 children 1000 parents
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
400 children in both treatment and control
500 parents in both treatment and control
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
Children: We are able to detect an effect size of 0.20 standard deviations (n=800, power = 80%, alpha = 0.05). Parents: We are able to detect an effect size of 0.18 standard deviations (n=1000, power = 80%, alpha = 0.05). We expect that including parent characteristics will enhance the statistical power.
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Norsk Senter For Forskningsdata AS
IRB Approval Date
2022-06-21
IRB Approval Number
671610
Analysis Plan

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