Grit: the power of passion and perseverance | Angela Lee Duckworth | Summary and Q&A
This content discusses the importance of grit in education and the need for a better understanding and development of it.
Questions & Answers
Q: What is the speaker's background and experience that led them to study the concept of grit in education?
The speaker left a demanding job in management consulting to become a math teacher in New York City public schools. They observed that IQ was not the only determining factor for student success and became interested in understanding students and learning from a motivational and psychological perspective. This led them to pursue a graduate degree in psychology and conduct research on success in challenging settings.
Q: What characteristic emerged as a significant predictor of success in the speaker's studies?
The characteristic that emerged as a significant predictor of success in the speaker's studies was grit. Grit is defined as passion and perseverance for long-term goals, having stamina, and working hard consistently to achieve those goals. It was found to be a stronger predictor of success than social intelligence, physical health, good looks, and even IQ.
Q: How did the speaker's study on grit in the Chicago public schools demonstrate its importance?
In the speaker's study, high school juniors were asked to take grit questionnaires, and it was found that grittier kids were significantly more likely to graduate. This result held true even when accounting for various characteristics such as family income, standardized test scores, and perceptions of school safety. Grit mattered, especially for students at risk of dropping out.
Q: What does the speaker state as the most shocking thing about grit?
The speaker expresses that the most shocking thing about grit is how little we know about building it. Despite its significance in predicting success, there is limited scientific understanding of how to develop grit in individuals, particularly in children. This lack of knowledge is a challenge for parents and teachers who want guidance on instilling grit and a solid work ethic in kids.
Q: What is the speaker's suggestion for building grit in children?
While the speaker acknowledges not having a definitive answer on how to build grit, they mention the idea of "growth mindset" as a promising approach. Growth mindset is the belief that one's ability to learn is not fixed and can improve through effort. When children learn about how the brain can change and grow in response to challenges, they are more likely to persevere in the face of failure. The speaker suggests that a combination of growth mindset and other strategies should be explored and tested to effectively build grit in children.
In this talk, Angela Lee Duckworth discusses the concept of grit, which she defines as passion and perseverance for long-term goals. Through her research, she found that grit is a significant predictor of success in various contexts, including education and career. However, she admits that there is still much to learn about how to build grit in individuals, especially children. Duckworth suggests that one effective method is promoting a growth mindset, which is the belief that one's ability to learn can change with effort. She concludes by emphasizing the importance of testing and measuring strategies for building grit, and the need to persist in developing grit in individuals.
Questions & Answers
Q: What did Angela Duckworth find when she compared her best and worst students in terms of IQ scores?
Angela Duckworth discovered that there was not a direct correlation between IQ scores and performance. Some of her best-performing students did not have exceptionally high IQ scores, while some of her highest-IQ students were not doing as well. This observation led her to question whether success in school and life depended on factors beyond intelligence.
Q: What motivated Angela Duckworth to leave her teaching job and pursue psychology?
After several years of teaching, Angela Duckworth realized that there was a need for a deeper understanding of students and learning from a motivational and psychological perspective. Inspired by the differences she saw in her students' performance, she decided to become a psychologist to explore the factors that contribute to success in various challenging settings.
Q: What was the characteristic that emerged as a significant predictor of success in Angela Duckworth's research?
The characteristic that emerged as a significant predictor of success in Angela Duckworth's research was grit. She defines grit as passion and perseverance for long-term goals. It is the ability to stick with one's future aspirations day in and day out, working hard to make them a reality. Grit is the determination to live life like a marathon, not a sprint.
Q: Where did Angela Duckworth conduct her research on grit in education?
Angela Duckworth conducted her research on grit in the Chicago public schools. She asked thousands of high school juniors to take grit questionnaires and then tracked their progress to see who would graduate. The study found that grittier kids were significantly more likely to graduate, even after accounting for other factors such as family income, standardized test scores, and school safety.
Q: What do parents and teachers often ask Angela Duckworth about building grit in kids?
Parents and teachers frequently ask Angela Duckworth about how to build grit in children. They want to know how to teach kids a solid work ethic, keep them motivated for the long run, and develop their perseverance. However, Duckworth admits that she doesn't have a definitive answer to these questions and that there is still much to learn about how to build grit in individuals.
Q: What is the relationship between talent and grit, according to Angela Duckworth's research?
Angela Duckworth's research shows that talent and grit are often unrelated or even inversely related. In other words, being talented does not guarantee that an individual will be gritty. She found that many talented individuals do not follow through on their commitments, while individuals with less talent can still have high levels of grit.
Q: What is the concept of "growth mindset" and how does it relate to building grit?
"Growth mindset" is an idea developed by Carol Dweck at Stanford University. It is the belief that one's ability to learn is not fixed but can change with effort. Angela Duckworth suggests that promoting a growth mindset can be a valuable strategy for building grit. When children understand that their abilities can improve through hard work and determination, they are more likely to persevere in the face of failure and setbacks.
Q: What does Angela Duckworth emphasize as the necessary next step in developing grit in individuals?
Angela Duckworth emphasizes the need to take the best ideas and strongest intuitions about building grit and put them to the test. She highlights that there is still a lot to learn and understand about how to develop grit, and that it is essential to measure the success of different strategies. She encourages a willingness to fail, be wrong, and start over with lessons learned in the pursuit of building grit in children and individuals.
Q: What is the main takeaway from Angela Duckworth's talk?
The main takeaway from Angela Duckworth's talk is that grit, defined as passion and perseverance for long-term goals, is a significant predictor of success. However, there is still much to be understood about how to build grit in individuals, especially children. Promoting a growth mindset, which emphasizes the belief that abilities can improve with effort, is one effective approach. Testing and measuring strategies are essential in the ongoing pursuit of developing grit in individuals.
Summary & Key Takeaways
The speaker left a demanding job in management consulting to become a seventh grade math teacher in New York City. They noticed that IQ was not the only factor influencing student performance.
The speaker conducted research on success in various settings, including West Point Military Academy, the National Spelling Bee, and challenging schools. They found that grit, defined as passion and perseverance for long-term goals, was a significant predictor of success.
The speaker emphasized the need to further understand and build grit in students. They mentioned the concept of growth mindset as a way to cultivate grit and stressed the importance of testing and measuring to determine effectiveness.