Among non-cognitive factors, the academic mindset of students contributes a lot in their academic success. To increase academic performance among students, more attention has been put on non-cognitive factors. It has been determined that non-cognitive factors like self-efficacy, motivation as well as a sense of belonging tend to be having a direct positive impact on the performance of students in school and also in their future outcomes. A number of researchers have put more emphasis to non-cognitive factors, ranging from personality, motivational habits as well as attitudes that promote performing well in school to give an explanation of the differences in academic performance among students in schools. Some have implied that non-cognitive factors tend to be more significant as compared to cognitive skills in assessing academic outcomes. Therefore, this paper will discuss the extent to which non-cognitive factors like motivation, self-efficacy as well as a sense of belonging contributes to the development of academic mindset of students in school.
Self-efficacy has been determined to be very important in developing students’ academic mindset which is helpful in improving academic performance. Literally, academic self-efficacy gives students the confidence to perform academic tasks and helps in developing an individual academic mindset for every student which results in the development of certain specific behaviors that promotes academic performance. Actually, students with high self-efficacy have the capacity of viewing problems as challenges to be understood rather than perceiving them as threats. Self-efficacy enhances the student’s commitment to academic goals they set, also enables students to have a task-diagnostic orientation rather than self-diagnostic as well as improve their efforts in the invent of failure to attain certain goals. Essentially, self-efficacy is related to past and future performance in non-academic activities. Researchers have also reported that self-efficacy is strongly attributed to real academic performance like mathematics calculations. Self-efficacy also impacts more distal outcomes like the student’s high perseverance intentions, selecting the main field of study in school and even making career choices. Self-efficacy has a behavioral influence and lowers academic stress. This is because self-efficacy enables students to view problems as challenges rather than threats which lower academic stress and consequentially sustain psychological and emotional health.
Motivation has also been determined to be contributing a lot to in developing students’ academic mindset. There are three components of motivation which include; expectancy, affect and intrinsic value. These motivational components assist students by promoting, sustaining or facilitating their learning in various ways. Among them, the academic motivation value component entails students’ objectives for a specific task as well as their beliefs regarding the significance and interest of the activities or tasks. The motivational value of the task presented to the students helps them to develop an academic mindset as they strive to meet their goals which consequentially enable improves their performance. For instance, the value of graduating in college is getting employed, therefore, due to this value; students tend to be motivated to work towards meeting this goal. Therefore, this motivation towards the goal set which is to graduate so as to get employed helps in developing the student’s academic mindset. All motivational components influence students’ absorption, transfer and also the usage of knowledge and skills which develops students’ academic mindset. The motivation to attain individual goals drives students to do cognitive tasks and as well as shape their responses to both success and failure. Moreover, intrinsic motivation enables students to be persistent and give the effort to proceed with learning and geared towards attaining their goals. Motivation also enables students to develop an academic mindset by facilitating retention in college among them.
The feeling of having a sense of belonging in a community is a vital human need. In essence, a sense of belonging is a psychological logic of identifying and affiliating with a community. Therefore, a sense of belonging assists students to develop an academic mindset by giving the student the courage to interact with other students and lecturers and as well take part in academic activities freely. There is a strong connection between social connection and academic adjustment that is brought about by a sense of belonging which promotes college retention. The sense of belonging in college enables the student to freely socialize with other students and cooperate with lecturers which enable them to adjust their academic performance. A student that has a feeling of a sense of belonging tends to perform better than students who lacs a feeling of a sense of belonging at college. A sense of belonging has a robust effect on students’ academic performance. Research indicates that a sense of belonging of students in university motives them to participate actively in campus activities and is committed to the university contributes to the retention in the university. This makes students be satisfied and feel part of the school and this keeps them in school and promotes their academic mindset. Actually, belonging is one aspect that schools have to address in order to enhance the lives of their students in various outcomes. The idiosyncratic sense of belonging exceeds the impact of many objective aspects basically attributed to being at risk, like getting a low GPA. This kind of feeling makes students focus on their studies in order to make their University or College a reputable learning institution. The sense of relatedness among students is important in their classroom engagement. For instance, students feeling unconnected tend to find it difficult being involved and participating in academic activities and tend to get bored, worried or even become frustrated. Moreover, the sense of belonging is associated with distal though significant academic results like the severity of effort applied and the number of absences in school.
To sum up, it is evident that non-cognitive factors like self-efficacy, a sense of belonging and also motivation contributes a lot in the development of students’ academic mindset. More attention should be diverted to non-cognitive factors, ranging from personality, motivational habits as well as attitudes that promote performing well in school to give an explanation of the differences in academic performance among students in schools. As discussed above, academic self-efficacy makes students confident to perform academic tasks and also enables them to develop their individual academic mindset which consequentially leads to the development of certain specific behaviors that promotes academic performance. Moreover, another reason why more attention should be placed on non-cognitive factors is that students with high self-efficacy have the capacity of viewing problems as challenges to be understood rather than perceiving them as threats. Self-efficacy enhances the student’s commitment to academic goals they set, also enables students to have a task-diagnostic orientation rather than self-diagnostic as well as improve their efforts in the invent of failure to attain certain goals. It is also clear that the motivational value of the task presented to the students’ help them to develop an academic mindset as they strive to meet their goals which consequentially enable improves their performance. Lastly, it can be determined that a sense of belonging enhances student’s academic mindset by encouraging students to participate in academic activities which thus promote retention. Based on these assumptions, it is therefore important that higher education facilities in determining and promoting non-cognitive factors in order to increase students’ performance on their campuses.