Goal-Setting with Students

We know goal-setting is linked to higher achievement in students. Yet many schools I talk to have no structures in place to facilitate systemic goal-setting among students.

What’s more, when I speak with teachers, they often feel that the district-mandated goal-setting structures are ineffective, cumbersome, or simply a “waste of time”.

I’m left with a few questions:

  • What is the current state of goal-setting best practice?
  • Why do schools face challenges when trying to create goal-setting structures?
  • Why are many schools lacking a systemic approach to goal-setting with students?
  • Why do district-initiated goal-setting programs have limited perceived value?

Here are the facts.

“Research has uncovered many key aspects of goal setting theory and its link to success (Kleingeld, et al, 2011). Setting goals is linked with self-confidence, motivation, and autonomy (Locke & Lathan, 2006). A 2015 study by psychologist Gail Matthews showed when people wrote down their goals, they were 33 percent more successful in achieving them than those who formulated outcomes in their heads.” – Psychology Today

What are we going to do about it?