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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

What is Pygmalion Effect and How Teachers Can Use It to Achieve Better Performance Among Students?

We know that more positive you are in your approach towards your career or teaching, more successful and a better teacher you are. So having believe in what you are doing reflects in your behaviour and your dealing with students. Having faith that your students are cabable of doing better brings positive results and it is the term called ‘The Pygmalion effects’.

According to the definition by wikipedia: The Pygmalion effect, or Rosenthal effect, refers to the phenomenon in which the greater the expectation placed upon people, often children or students and employees, the better they perform. The effect is named after Pygmalion, a Cypriot sculptor in a narrative by Ovid in Greek mythology, who fell in love with a female statue he had carved out of ivory.

Robert Rosenthal and Lenore Jacobson (1968/1992) report and discuss the Pygmalion effect at length. In their study, they showed that if teachers were led to expect enhanced performance from some children, then the children did indeed show that enhancement.

Research clearly depicts that teacher expectations can have both positive and negative effects on student learning and achievement. Ormrod (1999) insists that expectations influence the ways in which teachers evaluate students, behave toward students, and make decisions about students.

When teachers expect students to do well and show intellectual growth, they do; when teachers do not have such expectations, performance and growth are not so encouraged and may in fact be discouraged in a variety of ways. In the famous Oak School experiment, teachers were led to believe that certain students selected at random were likely to be showing signs of a spurt in intellectual growth and development. At the end of the year, the students of whom the teachers had these expectations showed significantly greater gains in intellectual growth than did those in the control group. This was especially pronounced in first and second graders and in fifth and sixth graders, though less so in third and fourth grade students

James Rhem, executive editor for the online National Teaching and Learning Forum, commented:

"When teachers expect students to do well and show intellectual growth, they do; when teachers do not have such expectations, performance and growth are not so encouraged and may in fact be discouraged in a variety of ways."

Praising your child results in that your child will believe that they are intelligent, it will become part of who they believe they are and they will act accordingly and you will find that this belief has a positive impact on those areas of your child’s school work that they may not doing as well as they could be.

Your child’s belief that they are intelligent will raise their performance in all areas of school life as they act on that belief. Not only teachers but parents can use it achieve better performance in all phases of life.

Useful links:

The Pygmalion Effect: A Dramatic Study in the Classroom
Pygmalion In The Classroom

First published at 'Factoidz'
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