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What are the
16 Habits of Mind?

What Habits Of Mind Are

Habits of Mind are dispositions or thinking behaviors that are desirable attributes for learning and living productively in a complex world.  People often use these habits when confronted with problems and situations to which the answers are not immediately apparent.  The language of the dispositions is (and has always been) intentionally framed in positive, growth-oriented language.  Each states a positive behavior and each starts with a verb that ends in “ing” to signify that it is always a behavior we can get better at and grow with. This is not a program but a lifelong framework dedicated to growing cognitive, social, and emotional development for all learners.

Why They Matter

This framework for thinking is as essential now as when it was first introduced over 30 years ago. When we commit to growing the habits both individually and as a community, we become more thoughtful, responsive, and innovative. Over the years during many social, political, scientific, and economic changes, the 16 Habits of Mind still stand and the application in practice has grown our thinking.

Our Mission

Educating for a more thoughtful world.

The Institute is the world’s most established organization dedicated to growing the 16 Habits of Mind through research, consultations, resources, and certification.

Habits of Mind are a universal framework for thinking and are as essential now as when we first introduced them 30 years ago.

Want to know more? Download a copy of our contextualized framework below.

For Teachers

Students will need deliberate practice and focused attention to grow their capacity as efficacious thinkers to navigate and thrive in the face of unprecedented change.

For Parents

Children will need deliberate practice and focused attention to grow their capacity as efficacious thinkers to navigate and thrive in the face of unprecedented change.

For Leaders

When leaders draw upon these dispositions when working with their colleagues, they both model and invite interdependence and innovation

For Students

When we draw upon intellectual resources, the results that are produced are more powerful, of higher quality, and of greater significance than if we fail to use those intellectual behaviors.

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