When students write about what motivates them and what they want to achieve, they’re more likely to reach their goals, according to researcher Jordan Peterson.
Writing about goals nearly erased the gender and ethnic minority achievement gap for Dutch college students, reports Anya Kamentez on NPR.
At the Rotterdam School of Management, requiring first-year students to take a “self-authoring” course raised the number of credits earned and lowered the dropout rate.
A fifth of students are first- and second-generation immigrants from non-Western backgrounds — Africa, Asia and the Middle East. . . . At the Rotterdam school, minorities generally underperformed the majority by more than a third, earning on average eight fewer credits their first year and four fewer credits their second year. But for minority students who had done this set of writing exercises, that gap dropped to five credits the first year and to just one-fourth of one credit in the second year.
Setting goals in writing “increased the probability that students would actually take their exams and hand in their assignments,” said Peterson.
Writing — and rewriting — your personal story can be powerful, writes Tara Parker-Pope in the New York Times.
In a Stanford study, African-Americans who were struggling to adjust to college were asked to create an essay or video about college life to be seen by future students. Participants “received better grades in the ensuing months than those in a control group.”