Published online: 7 May, TAPS 2019, 4(2), 66-67

Ching-Hui Sia

Department of Cardiology, National University Heart Centre Singapore, Singapore

Dear Editor,

I read with great interest the case study on “The Ownership Cycle and self-regulated learning” published by Jian Yi Soh in The Asia-Pacific Scholar (Soh, 2019) and congratulate the author for the development of this framework. The author describes how the teacher may encounter 2 different types of learners in the educational setting and how the ownership cycle may play a role in explaining difficult teaching encounters. He also proposes a 6-step intervention on how to help learners with difficulty.

There are parallels to be drawn between the 2 types of Ownership Cycles proposed and the well-described theory of Growth and Fixed mindsets (Dweck, 2006), in the context of medical education (Ricotta, Huang, Hale, Freed, & Smith, 2018). As a brief summary, learners with a Growth mindset feel that their intelligence can improve, while those with a Fixed mindset feel that their intelligence cannot change.

A similarity between Soh’s Ownership Cycle and Dweck’s Growth mindset is that in both instances learners are interested in self-improvement and take feedback as opportunities to improve oneself. A difference between Soh’s No-Ownership Cycle and Dweck’s fixed mindset is that in Soh’s model, there is an intrinsic assumption that learners are driven by personal ego and pride with the resultant formation of a “force field of rejection of the outside world”. Dweck’s theory makes no such assumption. It would be speculative to assume that students in the No-Ownership Cycle might want to praise themselves. A student with a fixed mindset with no desire for self-praise may also have the descriptions of “reflection on escapism” and “judgment focused on preserving self-image” applied to them. It might be hasty on the teacher’s part to assume that those who do not take well to feedback are interested in self-praise – This does not address the issue of learners with poor self-esteem. In fact, Ricotta et al. (2018) recommend that teachers themselves adopt a growth mindset when teaching learners, focusing on processes rather than fixed attributes which learners can improve on.

It would have been more illustrative if the author had provided certain examples of his own practice so as to better demonstrate the ownership cycle in daily use, particularly in an Asian educational context where cultural norms may differ from Western values, and share the practicability and challenges of implementing such an educational framework.

Note On Contributor

Ching-Hui Sia, MBBS, MRCP(UK), MMed(Int Med), is a Senior Resident at the National University Heart Centre Singapore.

Declaration of Interest

There is no conflict of interest, including financial, consultant, institutional or otherwise for the author.


Dweck, C. S. (2008). Mindset: The new psychology of success. New York: Ballantine Books.

Ricotta, D. N., Huang, G. C., Hale, A. J., Freed, J. A., & Smith, C. C. (2018). Mindset theory in medical education. The Clinical Teacher, 15, 1-3.

Soh, J. Y. (2019). The Ownership Cycle and self-regulated learning. The Asia-Pacific Scholar, 4(1), 65-68.

*Ching-Hui Sia
National University Heart Centre
Department of Cardiology
1E Kent Ridge Road, NUHS Tower Block Level 9
Singapore 119228
Telephone: +67795555
E-mail Address: