Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Opinion

July 23, 2013

MAUREEN HAYDEN: Grit Scale test could foretell student success

Is perseverance more important than IQ?

If you have a child in an Indiana school, you may think the last thing we need is another standard-ized test, given the anxiety the state’s multiple assessment tests already create for students and the noisy political debate they generate in the Statehouse.

But high school principal Jegga Rent thinks there may be some value to adding a new kind of assessment: One that measures a student’s grit.

Rent heads the Monument Lighthouse College Prep Academy, a charter high school in Indianapolis that serves low-income students at high risk for failure. His big goal is to get those kids into college and out of poverty.

Rent is an avid proponent of an arts-infused curriculum — using music to help teach math, for example — which makes learning more fun and gratifying for students. But he also knows learning can be daunting and discouraging, especially for chronically low-performing students.

This coming school year, in addition to taking their required academic assessment tests, the students at Monument will also be taking the Grit Scale test.

It’s a 12-question test developed by Angela Lee Duckworth, a former math teacher and now charter-school consultant who argues that educators and parents need to be as concerned about a student’s character development as their academic achievement.

Duckworth developed the Grit Scale while doing research on student success. She found, for example, that measures of self-control were more reliable predictors of students’ grade-point averages than their IQs.

The test has been described as “deceptively simple” since it only takes a few minutes to complete. Test-takers are asked to rate themselves on just 12 questions, ranging from “I finish whatever I begin” to “I often set a goal but later choose to pursue a different one.”

One of the places where Duckworth tested the exam was the United States Military Academy at West Point, where 1,200 freshman cadets took it. Of all the tests the cadets took that year, including grueling physical tests, it was the Grit Scale test that was the most accurate predictor of which cadets persisted and which ones dropped out.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • 'Reads' panel narrows titles Howard County Reads, a program introduced in 2004 to cultivate a love of reading and promote a sense of community, is another step closer to selecting a book for its 10th anniversary.In February, county residents began nominating a favorite for consi

    August 1, 2014

  • LETTERS: Concert Series 'beautiful musical experience' Store employees should split prizeSeveral weeks ago, a winning lottery ticket was purchased at one of our larger grocery stores. What I’d like to know is why the upper-management get a large cash prize (which they don’t need) while the employees of t

    August 1, 2014

  • Work program requires buy-in from industry Good help is hard to find.That’s essentially what Indiana companies have insisted for several years. The state struggles with a “skills gap,” the firms explain. They need employees, but can’t find enough — or in some cases, any — qualified Hoosiers.

    August 1, 2014

  • Take a walk to school At the risk of sounding like “old fogies,” we remember walking to school when we were kids.Back in the day, that’s how it was. If it was within walking distance, you were walking to school.Today, like much else, it’s a very different picture. The vas

    July 31, 2014

  • DAN COATS: New Harmony marks its 200th anniversary Situated between St. Louis and Louisville, New Harmony is a small town in southwest Indiana smaller than 1 square mile in area. Fewer than 1,000 Hoosiers call this serene Posey County community home.Despite its size, the town has monumental significa

    July 31, 2014

  • LETTERS: Marriage culture in area must change Marriage culture in area must change Last week's article on the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Kids Count report caught my eye. While I'm happy that Indiana is improving in the educational domain, the poverty statistics are saddening. I was just s

    July 31, 2014

  • A lookat IU salaries Of the five highest paid employees of Indiana University, three are involved with athletics. That was the case in 2013 as well.In new evidence that spending on athletic department salaries is outpacing the rest of the university, if not the vast majo

    July 31, 2014

  • Rob Burgess House of Burgess: Let's put lethal injection to sleep

    It was only a matter of time before this happened again; and I’m sad to say I’m not surprised at all.
    On July 22, the Supreme Court gave the go-ahead for the killing of Arizona death row inmate James R. Wood III, who had filed suit requesting a delay until the state revealed the details of the drugs that would be used to end his life.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Plot a plan to quit now OK, so maybe today isn’t the perfect day to quit smoking. For years, the experts were preaching any day was a good day to quit, and they had annual campaigns encouraging people to give up the habit.The campaigns raised awareness, and they led many sm

    July 30, 2014

  • LETTERS: City should celebrate its young track star City should celebrate its young track starCongratulations to Tionna Brown, who has given the city of Kokomo the platform to acknowledge what commitment, perseverance, sacrifice and determination can do.I find this a unique opportunity for her Common

    July 30, 2014

Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Renewed Violence Taking Toll on Gaza Residents 2 Americans Detained in North Korea Seek Help US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Tunisia Closes Borders With Libya Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries
Poll