Teachers' Expectations Can Influence How Students Perform : Shots - Health Blog
hide captionTeachers interact differently with students expected to succeed. But they can be trained to change those classroom behaviors. iStockphoto.com Teachers interact differently with students expected to succeed. In my Morning Edition story today, I look at expectations — specifically, how teacher expectations can affect the performance of the children they teach. The first psychologist to systematically study this was a Harvard professor named Robert Rosenthal, who in 1964 did a wonderful experiment at an elementary school south of San Francisco. The idea was to figure out what would happen if teachers were told that certain kids in their class were destined to succeed, so Rosenthal took a normal IQ test and dressed it up as a different test. "It was a standardized IQ test, Flanagan's Test of General Ability," he says. After the kids took the test, he then chose from every class several children totally at random. But just how do expectations influence IQ? Still, people have tried.
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