A mindset for EFL: Learners' beliefs about the role of natural talent

Sarah Mercer*, Stephen Ryan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

129 Citations (Scopus)


This article explores the role of the psychological construct of 'implicit theories' or 'mindsets' in the context of foreign language learning. It considers psychology-based research of the construct in respect to the EFL context and reports on a small exploratory study using interviews carried out with tertiary-level learners in Austria and Japan. The authors wish to argue for the relevance and importance of the construct for ELT, explore some of the potential issues raised by the initial study, and consider some of the pedagogical implications arising from both the literature and the findings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)436-444
Number of pages9
JournalELT Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Nov 3
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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