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Dear teens, take note. Good behaviour in high school leads to success later in life

Being a responsible student and having fewer problems with reading and writing are all significantly associated with greater educational attainment and finding a more prestigious job both 11 years and 50 years after high school.

more lifestyle Updated: Mar 03, 2018 14:20 IST
Press Trust of India, Berlin
Teenagers,School,Success
This study highlights the possibility that certain behaviours at crucial periods could have long-term consequences for a person’s life.(Shutterstock)

Being a responsible student, maintaining an interest in school and having good writing skills will not only help a teenager get good grades in high school but could also be predictors of occupational success decades later, according to a study.

Researchers at the University of Tubingen in Germany analysed data of 346,660 high school students in 1960, along with follow-up data from 81,912 of those students 11 years later and 1,952 of them 50 years later. The initial high school phase measured a variety of student behaviours and attitudes as well as personality traits, cognitive abilities, parental socioeconomic status and demographic factors. The follow-up surveys measured overall educational attainment, income and occupational prestige.

Being a responsible student, showing an interest in school and having fewer problems with reading and writing were all significantly associated with greater educational attainment and finding a more prestigious job both 11 years and 50 years after high school. These factors were also all associated with higher income at the 50-year mark, according to the study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

“Student characteristics and behaviours were rewarded in high school and led to higher educational attainment, which in turn was related to greater occupational prestige and income later in life,” said Marion Spengler from the University of Tubingen. “This study highlights the possibility that certain behaviours at crucial periods could have long-term consequences for a person’s life,” Spengler said.

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First Published: Mar 03, 2018 14:19 IST