Special Education M.A.

Year Approved


First Advisor

Strand, Charles

Second Reader

Jan Mrozinski;


Recently, there has been increased attention on the importance of non-cognitive skills in achieving academic success. Grit and The Growth Mindset are two of the characteristics. Research has established a positive correlation between Grit and The Growth Mindset with academic achievement, higher graduation rates, and better self-esteem. Evidence strongly suggests the benefits of developing strong cognitive skills reach beyond the school-aged years, providing individuals with the skills to be productive and successful adults. However, research on this topic is still in the early stages. There is limited qualitative information available. The studies offer quantitative information linking Grit and The Growth Mindset to success. There is a current void in the research investigating how psychological factors, such as Grit and The Growth Mindset, play in the academic success of students with disabilities. This capstone project reviews the available literature regarding the importance of Grit and the Growth Mindset; explores why some students succeed while others fail; investigates methods of how special educators can develop those skills in students with special needs.

Degree Name

Special Education M.A.

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis