Special Education M.A.

Year Approved


First Advisor

Silmser, Lisa


Grit first came on the scene that commands the American public’s attention when introduced by leading Grit researcher Angela S. Duckworth. Angela and her team put forth that Grit may be one of if not the key determining factor that resulted in the difference between success and failure for individuals. Angela’s team further purported that Grit may be developed in or taught to individuals thereby resulting in an increased opportunity for success. Angela Duckworth’s speech on TedTalks started the conversation surrounding the possibilities inherent in Grit. By 2018, Duckworth had published a book on the topic of Grit. Angela’s plea was for researchers across nations to pick up where her team had left off and to answer the remaining questions surrounding the concept of Grit but especially to discover answers related to whether or not Grit could be taught as a sort of rescue mission for the present state of educational systems as we know them. In recent years, research surrounding this topic has gone from almost non-existent to prolific. Researchers have answered the call and studied Grit across domains, countries, ages, socioeconomic and demographic barriers. Ultimately, Grit can be nurtured, encouraged, and even perhaps taught directly in the same manner that other elusive non-cognitive traits can be. Several of the studies show that Grit along with other key non-cognitive factors consistently correlate to increased success. However, the increases in the elusive trait we refer to as Grit may be short lived. Grit may also be less affective to levels of success than originally thought and could lead to unintended negative consequences.

Degree Name

Special Education M.A.

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis