Data

What If Students Have More Confidence in Growth Mindset Than Their Teachers?

Today, schools and districts are making social-emotional development a priority, and with good reason. Research shows that educators play a profound role in promoting students’ social-emotional skills and beliefs.

But what if students have greater confidence that they can improve than their teachers? That’s one of the surprises we found in our recent survey of more than 2,400 teachers and 36,000 students.

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Introducing Free Response Analytics

As schools collect feedback from their students, families, and teachers, we hear over and over from educators that some of the most important, actionable information comes from free response comments—and that educators want to hear more from their community. Yet knowing the right questions to ask and sorting through thousands of lines of text can be overwhelming.

About a year ago, we embarked on a journey to rethink free response questions on our surveys. Could we find a way to deliver actionable insights through well-designed questions and best-in-class text analytics?

Today, we’re excited to share the fruits of that project—free response questions that help collect the most relevant feedback from stakeholders, and a new Panorama analytics tool that automatically analyzes free response data in your school or district, visualizes the key themes, and highlights the most important responses for educators.

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Behind the Scenes: Student Voice Posters

Near the end of last school year we wanted to send a gift to school and district administrators as a token of appreciation for their partnership and their work supporting students. I’m a designer at Panorama and was excited to work on this end-of-year surprise for clients. To up the ante from previous years, I suggested that we create a poster from our dataset that captures feedback from 500,000+ (now well over 1 million!) students about their teachers and school using the Panorama Student Survey.

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Are We Thinking About Growth Mindset Too Narrowly?

An analysis of a nationwide measure of 23,000 students’ perceptions of growth mindset shows meaningful differences in what students believe they can change and a gender gap.

Last school year, David Andrews, a social studies teacher at Piedmont Hills High School (Calif.), noticed something in his students that puzzled him.

As a teacher of 6 years, Andrews had read the research by Stanford Professor Carol Dweck and others that showed the impact of having a growth mindset on students’ learning and academic achievement. Andrews promoted this belief that people can work deliberately to change their most basic abilities — namely their intelligence.

“Students are so varied when it comes to their mindsets,” Andrews said. “I’m still working to crack the enigma of how to support all my students’ beliefs about themselves.” He would overhear students saying they were good at social studies, but would never be good at math. Other students would say they could always work harder to do better in class, while some felt they just weren’t that talented.

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Panorama Data Timeline

A Year of Panorama Data in School Districts

When measuring feedback from your students, parents, teachers, and community, set yourself up for success with a targeted timeline for collecting and reviewing data, and then acting on results. As you plan ahead for feedback and analysis in your school or district, use this suggested year-long timeline for your data needs.

We started this timeline in the fall to align to the school year, but be sure to customize these target activities to whatever schedule fits best with your own goals!

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Making Data Matter in Your School or District

Over the past five years, I’ve worked with many schools and districts across the United States interested in making data matter for setting goals and improving outcomes. The educators and leaders I’ve worked with who were most successful in using their data to drive improvement were not only skilled in making sense of the results, but also intentional in how they engaged and communicated with their community before collecting data. Making sure that their community knew why and how the data was being collected, what different results would suggest, and how best to use the data to take action set them up for success, and helped them leverage their data to improve teaching and learning.

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