Caitlin Marsh

Primary Teacher

St. Ignatius' Primary

  • Growth Mindset

What Happens When I Use Praise For Effort In The Classroom?


Research around praise for effort has been evident in recent years and is beneficial across all stages of education and highlights links between praise for effort and pupil confidence. According to McClean (2003), whilst all pupils cannot be the best, they can be encouraged to focus on their own personal best which greatly benefits self-esteem. Within my classroom, I work to establish a growth-mind-set approach and encourage children to become confident individuals, who are effective contributors, successful learners and responsible citizens in line the Four Capacities of Curriculum for Excellence (Scottish Government, 2008). By undertaking this enquiry, I aimed to measure the impact, if any, praise for effort would have upon engagement and motivation and in turn, improving overall pupil confidence in relation to literacy learning.

This enquiry links with research in relation to developing a growth mind-set and the National Improvement Framework and Improvement Plan for Scottish Education (2018) In relation to achieving excellence and equity. This is also in keeping with Dweck (2007) who states that it is vital for educators to provide students with the tools to maintain their learning in learning by keeping them focused on the process of achievement.


The aim of this enquiry is to incorporate a planned and structured approach to measure the impact praise has upon children’s learning, overall participation and individual written tasks in literacy.

Download Practitioner Enquiry