Angela Duckworth on Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

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Angela Duckworth researches self-control and grit, which is defined as passion and perseverance for long term goals. Her research has demonstrated that there are factors that can be more predictive of success than IQ. In this episode we cover some of her findings on grit, including academic and popular misconceptions of this work. We also discuss research on standardized testing, self-control and more.


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Angela Duckworth, PhD, is a 2013 MacArthur Fellow and professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. An expert in non-I.Q. competencies, she has advised the White House, the World Bank, NBA and NFL teams, and Fortune 500 CEOs. Prior to her career in research, she was an award-winning math and science teacher as well as the founder of a summer school for low-income children that won the Better Government Award from the state of Massachusetts. She completed her BA in neurobiology at Harvard, her MSc in neuroscience at Oxford, and her PhD in psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. More recently, she founded the Character Lab, a nonprofit whose mission is to advance the science and practice of character development in children. Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, due out May 2016, is her first book. – Blurb taken from

See Q & A with Angela