What are Habits of Mind?

A Habit of Mind means having a disposition toward behaving intelligently when confronted with problems the answers to which are not immediately known. When humans experience dichotomies, are confused by dilemmas, or come face to face with uncertainties–our most effective actions require drawing forth certain patterns of intellectual behavior. When we draw upon these intellectual resources, the results that are produced through are more powerful, of higher quality and greater significance than if we fail to employ those patterns of intellectual behaviors.Arthur L. Costa and Bena Kallick

Costa and Kallick’s (2000) Habits of Mind framework focuses on particular intellectual dispositions to behave in thoughtful and productive ways when confronted with challenges.  Within their framework, Costa and Kallick identified 16 exemplary Habits and Mind, which 3CSN’s Habits of Mind Project has adopted.  These Habits of Mind are as follows:

  • Persisting
  • Managing impulsivity
  • Listening with understanding and empathy
  • Thinking flexibly
  • Thinking about your thinking (Metacognition)
  • Striving for accuracy
  • Questioning and problem posing
  • Applying past knowledge to new situations
  • Thinking and communicating with clarity and precision
  • Gather data through all senses
  • Creating, imagining, and innovating
  • Responding with wonderment and awe
  • Taking responsible risks
  • Finding humor
  • Thinking interdependently
  • Remaining open to continuous learning