Wait for it : delay-discounting and academic performance among an Irish adolescent sample

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Title: Wait for it : delay-discounting and academic performance among an Irish adolescent sample
Authors: Freeney, Yseult
O'Connell, Michael F.
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/2474
Date: Jun-2010
Abstract: Beyond cognitive ability and family background, are there other significant determinants of educational attainment? From research in psychology, economics, education and criminology, one powerful influence is the ability to delay gratification, operationalised in this paper as ‘delay-discounting’. It is intuitively plausible that the ability to subordinate short-term appetites in order to obtain long-term goals could have positive consequences for academic achievement. A representative sample of 1,131 students preparing for a state examination were offered a series of hypothetical options in which prize winnings, and the interval before the winnings could be collected, were varied. Greater willingness to wait was rewarded with increments in winnings. Participants were also given a short test of cognitive ability, asked about their academic achievement, and family and community status. A multivariate analysis indicated that, while controlling for cognitive ability and economic deprivation, delay-discounting made a significant prediction of attainment. Policy implications for children’s learning are discussed.
Funding Details: Not applicable
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Elsevier
Copyright (published version): 2009 Elsevier
Keywords: Delay-discounting;Deferral of gratification;Self-control;Educational attainment;Cognitive ability;Non-cognitive ability;Economic deprivation
Subject LCSH: Adolescent psychology--Ireland
Educational attainment--Ireland
Cognition
DOI: 10.1016/j.lindif.2009.12.009
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Psychology Research Collection

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