Content Of Their Character: Grit et al

My review of 2 new books, one by Scott Seider and the other by Paul Tough, is up at Commonwealth Magazine.

AS A THOUGHT experiment, imagine you’re magically “shaping” a high school senior. You’re lucky. Her starting point is that she’s at the 80th percentile in both IQ and “character”—a composite measure of traits like grit, tenacity, and optimism. You can increase either variable, but only by lowering the other variable by the same amount. For example, you could “shape” her into a kid who is in the 90th percentile in IQ but 70th percentile in character. Or vice versa.

Where would you set the dial? Which variable matters more in generating success?

Click here to read the whole thing.

I'm going to hear Angela Duckworth, whose work is featured in Tough's book, later this week.