Section 2, Article 5 - With more advanced reasoning and cognitive abilities, adolescents can engage in their school environments in new and meaningful ways. Falling between elementary and high school, middle school education usually includes grades 6 through 8. Young adolescents have to navigate many social, biological, and academic factors. One predictor of success is their beliefs about the nature of intelligence. If teenagers subscribe to the entity theory of intelligence, then they comprehend intelligence as an innate, permanent quality that one has from birth, meaning that effort will not increase their attainment. When individuals hold this line of thinking, they will believe that there is nothing that they can do to change their position in life and thus will be less likely to fully engage in their education. In contrast, if they adopt what is referred to as an incremental theory of intelligence, then they believe that they can put in effort to directly improve their intelligence and master a domain. This may be done by paying attention, engaging in class, or studying. Incremental theory of intelligence is a form of intrinsic motivation, and it should be cultured by educators.
Secondary education is the period of schooling that falls between elementary school and college, typically for students between ages 12 and 18. During this educational period, achievement is correlated with the health and prosperity of the individual as well as the nation. Increased stress can lead to various forms of mental health issues during the transitions between grade school, secondary education, and college. When transitioning to a new level of education, many students experience the top-dog phenomenon, which occurs when an individual is taken from a top position (oldest, smartest, or biggest) and placed in the lowest position (youngest, least powerful, or smallest). After such transitions, many individuals perceive a significant decrease in their quality of education and overall life satisfaction.
As many older adolescents are capable of abstract logic, most high school curriculums are geared towards formal thinking. For high schoolers in the United States, accountability of educational outcomes has led to an increase in graduation requirements, advanced placement classes, and . On a global scale, the has been used by 50 nations to measure how 15-year-olds apply the knowledge that they have gained during their education. This particular battery of tests indicates that students in the U.S. struggle on such tasks. Many are concerned that such tests and increased graduation requirements may undercut creativity and invention. Some students find that high school does not suit their needs, and even though graduation rates are increasing nationwide, a sizable amount of high schoolers do not graduate. More research is needed on how to foster high schoolers’ academic success.