There are many variables that make a person successful: education, talent, and hard work are just a few. But, there’s also grit — or better known as determination — that psychologist Angela Lee Duckworth believes, based on research, is a significant predictor of success.
At the University of Pennsylvania, Duckworth has conducting studies on grit and how ‘sticking with it’ helps achieve long-term goals. In an interview by Deborah Perkins-Gough, Duckworth describes her research and the relationship between grit and achievement. She also talks about how it’s important to help students develop grit and other important traits.
Duckworth has also presented a TED Talks Education session, which was filmed in April 2013. She describes how living life is more like a marathon and not a sprint. Having talent alone is not enough. Duckworth shares how data shows there are many talented people, but they don’t follow through on their commitments, and therefore don’t become successful. In fact, grit matters greatly in school and in careers upon graduation.
Prior to her decade of work at the University of Pennsylvania, Duckworth taught math to 7th graders in New York public school where she quickly understood that IQ wasn’t the basis for those who did well. She found that grit, passion, and resilience are key characteristics.