What is a Growth Mindset, and What Role Does it Play in Girls’ Education?

“I can’t do that” vs. “I can’t do that yet” – the difference is massive. The power of ‘yet’ signifies that any goal is within reach when coupled with the right mindset and approach. It lies at the core of the growth mindset philosophy.

A growth mindset empowers girls to achieve goals through dedication, effort, and embracing challenges. It encourages learning from mistakes and continuous growth. It views failures as opportunities for learning and fuels resilience and persistence. This mindset is crucial for girls’ education, especially in marginalized communities, because it helps them overcome barriers and see education as a path to success.

Some key aspects of a growth mindset for girls include:

Belief in the potential for growth: Girls with a growth mindset believe that their abilities and intelligence can be developed through effort, practice, and learning from others.

Challenging gender stereotypes: Girls in marginalized communities may face additional societal barriers and gender stereotypes that limit their opportunities and aspirations. A growth mindset challenges these limitations by promoting the belief that girls can excel in any field or pursue any career they choose, regardless of their background.

Embracing challenges: Rather than avoiding challenges, people with a growth mindset see them as opportunities for growth. They are willing to take on new tasks and challenges, even if they initially seem difficult or in the face of criticism.

Persistence and resilience: Girls with a growth mindset understand that setbacks and failures are part of the learning process. They work through setbacks, learn from their mistakes, and persevere in the face of obstacles.

Breaking the cycle of poverty: A growth mindset empowers girls to believe in their ability to improve their circumstances through hard work and dedication. It encourages them to pursue education, develop skills, and strive for a better future, breaking the cycle of poverty that may be prevalent in their communities.

Inspiring and supporting others: Young people with a growth mindset often encourage and support others and believe in the potential for growth in everyone.


A growth mindset is core to our work. Read more about how it works across our youth clubs, teacher training, accelerated learning, and media for social impact.