Abstract :Cognitive ability is critical for an individual’s academic, social, and career success. Reasoning ability is one of the most important cognitive abilities, and ways to improve individuals’ reasoning ability is therefore of great interest. Growth mindset is the belief that skills are malleable, and individuals with a growth mindset therefore believe that their reasoning ability can be improved through effort. However, the effect of growth mindset on reasoning ability remains unclear, particularly in adolescents and young adults. This study investigated the effect of growth mindset on reasoning ability in 1083 Chinese adolescents and young adults, and examined the moderating role of self-esteem. Growth mindset was positively correlated with reasoning ability (r = 0.38, p < 0.01), and self-esteem was positively correlated with both growth mindset (r = 0.43, p < 0.01) and reasoning ability (r = 0.25, p < 0.01). Regression analysis showed that the interaction between self-esteem and growth mindset significantly predicted reasoning ability (β = 0.149, t = 4.39, p < 0.001), which indicates that self-esteem moderated the relationship between growth mindset and reasoning ability. Simple slope analysis further revealed that the correlation between growth mindset and reasoning ability was stronger in the high self-esteem group than in the low self-esteem group (F(3,1105) = 69.54, p < 0.001, f2 = 0.19). Overall, our results indicate that growth mindset benefits reasoning ability in Chinese adolescents and young adults, and that enhancing self-esteem could strengthen this effect.
Keywords:Growth mindset;Reasoning ability;Self-esteem;Cognitive ability;Chinese adolescents and young adults
Published journal: Current Psychology （SSCI） First Published 09 February 2021