ERIC Number: ED419594
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996
Reference Count: N/A
Top of the Class: Guiding Children along the Smart Path to Happiness. Creativity Research.
Bronzaft, Arline L.
The relationship between high academic achievement and personal characteristics is fraught with myths. Three studies examined this relationship in academic high achievers (AHA). Study 1 participants were 529 of 850 members of the New York Phi Beta Kappa (72 percent return) responding to a 1979 mail questionnaire. Study 2 participants were 414 Phi Beta Kappa members (55 percent return) responding to a 1981 mail questionnaire. Study 3 participants were more than 900 of 2,000 Phi Beta Kappas over 50 years old responding to a national mail questionnaire and 20 individuals responding to telephone interviews. Major findings include the following: (1) birth order did not relate to school success; (2) important for academic performance were fair parental treatment and self-discipline; (3) families expected and cultivated high academic achievement; (4) men were more likely than women to believe that academic achievement and life satisfaction were strongly related; (5) the love of learning was learned in homes where parents valued learning and was reinforced in enriched school environments; (6) older AHAs typically rated their physical and mental health as good or excellent, and life satisfaction as positive or very positive--they also indicated high marital satisfaction, positive relationships with children, and close extended family relationships; (7) perceived contributors to life satisfaction were humor, religious beliefs, and good work habits; (8) most AHAs reported good family relationships; and (9) the most common vocational choices were education, professional, and business, with more than half of respondents indicating they were happy with their occupation. (The surveys are appended. Contains approximately 150 references.) (KB)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Adults, Attitudes, Birth Order, Elementary Secondary Education, Family Characteristics, Health, High Achievement, Higher Education, Job Satisfaction, Life Satisfaction, Mental Health, Moral Values, Predictor Variables, Questionnaires, Sex Differences, Socioeconomic Status, Telephone Surveys, Well Being
Ablex Publishing Corporation, 355 Chestnut Street, Norwood, NJ 07648. Tel: 203-661-7602; Fax: 203-661-0792 (paperback: ISBN-1-56750-185-0; hardcover: ISBN-1-56750-184-2).
Publication Type: Books; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A