SOAR Student Profiles

Autumn Martin

Autumn Martin

  • SOAR Position: Member; Alumni
  • Major: Psychology
  • Faculty Mentor(s): Dr. Tom Brinthaupt; Dr. Ryan Korstange

Current Focus: Examining Mindsets about Different Ability Domains Relevant to College Success

Project Description

My research looks at how college students perceive themselves when looking at different ability domains. Based off of Dweck's Mindset Theory I wanted to see if college students were presenting with fixed or growth mindsets, but not just with intelligence. I looked at domains that college students could be presented with at some point within their college careers. I was interested in seeing if students believe that they have fixed traits (fixed mindset) or if these different domains could be something that is developed with time and work (growth mindset). Also looking to see if students can have different mindsets depending upon on the domain that is being discussed, or if our mindset is something that is seen throughout all of the domains in question.

Why does this topic interest you?

I think Carol Dweck's Mindset Theory is extremely interesting. I think that mindset is something that can benefit so many people if it is understood. When we think of things such as athletics, or leadership skills, we hear things like, "They have natural talent for athletics", or "They were born to lead." This can be misleading because these are skills that can be developed with work and effort. It doesn't solely depend on talent and by understanding that there is a chance that an individual, specifically a college student, could possibly put themselves out of their comfort zone to try something different. This could potentially influence a college student to change their career paths, or attempt something extracurricularly that they might not have tried before understanding mindset theory.

What are your professional aspirations?

After graduating from MTSU I hope to get into Graduate School. I plan to eventually obtain my Ph.D. in clinical psychology with an emphasis of therapy with children.

Do you have any advice for future researchers?

Find a topic that you are interested in, and see if there are any professors that are also interested in that topic. Reach out to them. Even if they are full for the semester it doesn't hurt to reach out and ask. Introduce yourself to these professors. Don't think that you have to wait until you are a Senior or Junior to be able to do research. If you are interested in doing research, look at what it is that you would like to do research in and then start seeing if there are any open opportunities.

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