Hope in Education


Hope in Education - How Having Hope Can Help You Throughout Your Studies

By Antonietta Marinelli | Dec 04, 2020

This month at Mentor Education we are focusing on hope as we are involved in the 2020 Hope Barometer. The 2020 Hope Barometer is an international research initiative involving over 15 countries worldwide. The Barometer itself is formed by a scientifically broad-based study of the hopes, desires, and future expectations of our population, designed to investigate the fundamental aspects, conditions, and interrelations of a positive attitude towards the future. For more information surrounding the Hope Barometer
Visit https://www.mentor.edu.au/hopebarometer/

The 2019 analysis of the Hope Barometer allowed Mentor Education to identify the key factors of influence that hope has on learning strategies aiming to statistically improve retention, completion and graduate outcomes.

With the inclusion of 474 Australian respondents amongst 9838 in total across the globe, the data from the survey provided insight into how hopeful individuals are in addition to how satisfied they are with their personal lives, national politics, the economy, social issues and developments regarding the climate and environment.

Research shows that one element that can contribute toward a student's success is their level of hope. There is no more important predictor of success than hope, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development’s Valerie Maholmes’ described it as the ability to envision a more positive future, even when all evidence points to the contrary.

Self-efficacy, or the belief in one’s ability to perform acts that will lead to achieve a goal, is essential for both a student and a teacher. Once teachers hold belief that every student is capable of achievement, they must also believe that they have the ability to help make that happen. This can only happen when teachers have high expectations for all students, not just the high-performing ones (Lahey, 2015).

A study by Harvard professor, Robert Rosenthal showcased the idea to figure out what would happen if teachers were told that certain kids in their class were destined to succeed. A normal IQ test was set up but dressed entirely differently - a standardized IQ test, Flanagan’s Test of General Ability, but the cover read Harvard Test of Inflected Acquisition. Rosenthal told the teachers that this test from Harvard had the ability to predict which kids were ‘special’ - this is, which kids were about to experience a dramatic growth in their IQ.

As Rosenthal did more research, he found that expectations affect teachers' moment-to-moment interactions with the children they teach in a thousand almost invisible ways. Teachers give the students that they expect to succeed more time to answer questions, more specific feedback, and more approval: They consistently touch, nod and smile at those kids more (NPR, 2012).

The impact that education has on the level of Dispositional Hope is considerable. Dispositional Hope measure is the most common and established method of measuring an individual's level of hope. This measure is built around Snyder’s cognitive model of hope which focuses on ideas of self-efficiency and one’s ability to achieve goals and alter the future and consider hope as more an inherent and permanent personality trait, rather than state impacted by intervention. (Snyder, et al., 2002) (Pacico, Bastianello, Cristian, & Hutz, 2013).

Researchers have found that students who are high in hope have greater academic success, stronger friendships, and demonstrate more creativity and better problem-solving.(Zakrzewski, 2012).

If we have motivating educators, we are likely to fall into the positive mindset of hopefulness and drive. Hope doesn’t mean wishful thinking—as in “I hope I win the lottery.” Instead, a person who is high in hope knows how to do the following things.

● Set clear and attainable goals
● Develop multiple strategies to reach those goals.
● Stay motivated to use the strategies to attain the goals, even when the going gets tough.

Educators helping their students cultivating hope may be one of the most important things to do for them. Not only to help them achieve higher grades in the short-run, but to give them the motivation and confidence to reach long-term goals both throughout their educational journey and life. (Zakrzewski, 2012).


● C.R. Synder (2002),. Handbook of Hope: Theory, Measures and Applications, pp. 345 – 356 [Accessed November 27 2020.]

● Krafft, A., Perrig-Chiello, P., & Walker, A. M. (2018). Hope for a Good Life - Results of the Hope-Barometer International Research Program (Vol. 72). Heidelberg: Springer. [Accessed November 25. 2020]

● Lahey, J., (2015) The Role of Adult Mentorship in Helping Children Deal With Trauma. The Atlantic [Accessed November 26. 2020]

● NPR., (2012). Teachers Expectations Can Influence How Students Perform. [Accessed on November 27. 2020]

● Pacio, Bastianello, Cristian, & Hutz. (2013). Hope Theory: Rainbows in the Mind. (2002) Psychological Inquiry, Vol. 13, No.4. pp. 249 - 275. Jstor [Accessed 25 28 November. 2020]

● Zakrzewski, V., (2012). How to Help Students Develop Hope, Greater Good Education [Accessed November 25. 2020]



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