Academic success pinned on being able to pay attention

Researchers asked parents of 430 preschool children to rate their children on items such as “plays with a single toy for long periods of time” or “child gives up easily when difficulties are encountered”. They then used standardised tests to assess reading and maths skills at ages 7 and 21. Children who scored higher on attention span and persistence at age four had nearly 50% greater odds of getting a bachelor’s degree by age 25.

“Someone can be brilliant, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they can focus when they need to and finish a

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