The controversy surrounding self-fulfilling prophecies, while originally centered on proving their existence, has recently settled on the probability of such phenomenon occurring in a natural environment. While not directly cited in this resource guide, the original Pygmalion Effect experiment by Robert Rosenthal and Leonore Jacobson, while a success in its own self-absorbed goals, failed to make any connections outside of its own hypothesis. The Harvard professor and elementary school principal proved that teacher expectation can directly influence student achievement, but the experiment, conducted in a fixed environment, did not initially translate to the naturalistic world. The original teachers, the independent variables of the test, were told what to expect from their students, and although those students, a heterogeneous mixture of academic potentials, did in fact respond with positive correlation to the subsequent behaviors of their teachers, there was no guarantee that such cause and effect would occur in a literal classroom. In a series of experiments that followed in the decade after Rosenthal and Jacobson's revolutionary yet flawed research, the naturalistic implications of the Pygmalion Effect were established, answering the question of whether or not teachers do make such drastic predictions, basing their expectations on first impressions and superficial observations and inadvertently fulfilling their own prophecies concerning their students.
[...] Since most teachers are adults with equal knowledge of contemporary media, or even parents themselves, why do they not see beyond the physical appearance of their students and realize that the façade is not the whole story? The article insists that Christian parents should not permit their children to become what they see on television, that their docility is to blame for this “lost generation,” but such shift of guilt seems impossible if adults are as believing in first impressions as they are in the classroom. [...]
[...] I found the excerpts useful, as some of the quotes were not available on the official Frontline website. However, the rest of the article focuses more or less on the actual advertising techniques, not on the effects of such marketing on the teenagers themselves. Young, Yolanda. Name Doesn't Have to Be a Burden.” USA Today 3 Jun. 2005: A15. Academic Search Premier Nov
[...] contention is in their importance. He states that “through the 1980s many researchers believed that the self-fulfilling prophecy was a powerful and pervasive phenomenon. However, neither meta-analyses of the experimental research nor naturalistic studies supported this conclusion” (Jussim). In other words, the degree to which self-fulfilling prophecies affect the world, especially the classroom, is highly contested and experimentally impossible to prove or, consequentially, disprove. His research has mostly circled around this idea, trying to pinpoint which groups are more susceptible to the Pygmalion Effect and what types of expectations influence their targets more drastically. [...]
[...] Academic Search Premier Nov
[...] The true question, and what I believe should be the center of contemporary research, is the nature of these behavioral changes in teachers. Exactly how do they convey their expectations, and how are these altered behaviors truly different from their prior behaviors to the extent that students, most of whom do not pay close attention to their educators, notice. Harris, Monica J. and Robert Rosenthal. Effects of Teacher Expectations, Gender, and Behavior on Pupil Academic Performance and Self-Concept.” Journal of Educational Research 79.3 (1986): 173-179. [...]
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