New study points to certain behaviors as an early indicator for college completion

A study by Oregon State University’s College of Public Health and Human Sciences found that children of preschool age who are able to pay attention are more likely to complete college.

Researchers from the university tracked 430 children from preschool age to adulthood and found that the children who were able to pay attention, follow directions, and complete a task were 50 percent more likely to graduate with a college degree by 25. The researchers measured these skills by having the parents rate their child’s ability to  “play with a single toy for long periods of time” or  if the “child gives up easily when difficulties are encountered.”

Regarding the findings, Megan McClelland, the lead author of the study stated, “We didn’t look at how well they did in college or at grade point average. The important factor was being able to focus and persist. Someone can be brilliant, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they can focus when they need to and finish a task or job.”

Listen to the NPR interview here.

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