"Everyone Seems Smarter Than Me”: Duke students and Beliefs About Intelligence


February 7, 2020March 3, 2020

Location: Student Wall

About the Exhibit

Welcome. We invite you to explore and reflect on what students at Duke say and believe about what it means to be “smart”. The mindsets we hold about intelligence, even if we’re not aware of them, matter. 

Our goal is to make the implicit more explicit, to share what is unsaid. 

What beliefs do you share? What quotes would you push back on? What do we seem to value collectively? How do our beliefs affect our lives in and out of the classroom? What patterns do you see? What would you change about our culture? 

This work is part of ongoing research in the BRITE Lab in Psychology and Neuroscience. Quotes are from real students in Duke classrooms replying to questions like, “Are you intelligent” Why or why not”? and "How did you come to have your current level of intelligent?" We chose quotes to represent reoccurring themes. Quotes have been edited for clarity and to preserve anonymity.