Summary of Key Points

  • Student perceptions of school events, teacher expectations, and student-teacher interactions impact their academic achievement.
  • Cognitive activity influences behavior, and negative or faulty cognitions are often automatic and involuntary.
  • Desired behavior change may be affected through cognitive change.
  • Many students inaccurately attribute their lack of academic success to external, uncontrollable sources.
  • Cognitive interventions are time-limited, short-term, structured, goal-oriented, and collaborative, making them ideal for teachers to use in their classrooms.
  • Solution-focused cognitive approaches emphasize that students learn to become personally responsible for their academic success.
  • Adolescents’ beliefs about an internal state or feeling are not always in sync with their behavior.
  • Guided self-reflection can help reduce this discrepancy.
  • To evaluate if a perception is accurate, the teacher must consider whether it is valid and/or reasonable.
  • Clear expectations and consistent feedback from the teacher tend to increase student achievement.
  • Classroom environments that are supportive, tructured, allow for student decision making, change groupings often, and provide adequate challenge tend to be more effective learning environments.
  • Cognitions or perceptions are only faulty is they are inflexible, inaccurate, or extreme.
  • To assuming personal responsibility, a student must acknowledge that he chooses to react or behave in a certain manner, that no one can “make” him do or feel anything.

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