Patterico's Pontifications

5/6/2014

Confirming What A Lot Of Us Have Long Believed

Filed under: General — Dana @ 10:09 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Guess what? Hard work, high expectations and commitment pay off.

We find that the Asian-American educational advantage over whites is attributable mainly to Asian students exerting greater academic effort and not to advantages in tested cognitive abilities or socio-demographics.

Also, no matter their economic background or the educational levels of their families, Asian American students typically surpass their white counterparts by the time they reach fifth grade.

“What accounts for Asians’ greater academic effort than whites?” asked study authors Amy Hsin of Queens College in New York and Yu Xie of the University of Michigan.

“Asian and Asian American youth are harder working because of cultural beliefs that emphasize the strong connection between effort and achievement,” the authors wrote. Studies show that Asian and Asian American students tend to view cognitive abilities as qualities that can be developed through effort, whereas white Americans tend to view cognitive abilities as qualities that are inborn.”

It appears that the standard historical explanations are now being challenged as well,

Previous explanations for this phenomenon have included family socio-demographic characteristics, natural cognitive skills and academic effort.

The authors wrote that family wealth was not a factor in performance.

Similarly, there was no convincing evidence that the reason was genetic.

The answer, the authors wrote, appeared to be a matter of motivation and work ethic.

“Qualities such as attentiveness, self-control, motivation and persistence may be as important as cognitive abilities in positively affecting academic performance,” the authors wrote. “Asian American parents may engage in parenting practices that better cultivate these qualities that, in turn, enable their children’s academic success.”

Here’s a wild idea: If this success is not just a possibility, but a reality for Asian American families, surely it can become a reality for any family willing to take ownership of parental responsibilities, put the time in and do the required hard work – no matter their ethnicity, their level of income, or their station in life. Equal opportunity success!

–Dana

61 Responses to “Confirming What A Lot Of Us Have Long Believed”

  1. “Qualities such as attentiveness, self-control, motivation and persistence may be as important as

    Merely another reason why I believe that socio-political biases are so crucial in shaping a people and society. Or that when race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, religion, etc, in particular are being discussed, I immediately think not of the race/ethnicity/gender/sexuality/etc of the person or community in question but the ideological dynamics of that person or community.

    It would be fascinating if a magic wand could be waved over, as one example, the city of Detroit, so that instead of it being full of people who are blindly, rabidly, foolishly liberal, it suddenly became full of people who were politically-culturally moderate to conservative. I have a hunch that such a transformation would be the ultimate of epiphanies.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  2. We find that the Asian-American educational advantage over whites is attributable mainly to Asian students exerting greater academic effort and not to advantages in tested cognitive abilities or socio-demographics.

    Why should Whites put in any effort since everything is handed to us because of privilege?

    Sarcasm off.

    Steve57 (e86077)

  3. I recently read one of Thomas Sowell’s books. In it, he described how the first generation of Polish in America had the worst scores on the military’s IQ tests, but after a few generations they had surpassed the national average.

    It seems culture is the primary factor, and that genetics makes far less difference than people think.

    Oh, but I’m sorry, America has structural racism that automatically makes white people successful and stops anyone non-white from succeeding. You know, except for all the whites who failed for generations until becoming assimilated, like the Irish in the past, or the non-whites who come and immediately succeed, like the Chinese. Obviously structural racism skips some people on both sides. But it’s still a constant, just like how gravity affects most objects but completely skips some others. That’s what inescapable, fixed forces do.

    Rob (923baa)

  4. the authors are obviously racist.

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  5. tudy authors Amy Hsin of Queens College in New York and Yu Xie of the University of Michigan.

    yup… and basking in their Asian privilege, no less.

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  6. Taking an interest in your kid’s work and going over it at the dinner table seems to be a small thing Whitey can pick up from another culture.

    Twerking, body piercing, tats, OTOH, seem the trend.

    gary gulrud (e2cef3)

  7. What about half-Asians?

    JD (3a4df6)

  8. Indubitably, having O’Dumbazz in the WH, on the Boobtube, partying like he’s got the GDP in his pocket, is a powerful incentive for youngsters to focus on just being kool.

    gary gulrud (e2cef3)

  9. I served a decent looking mom and her maybe three kids last night. She had these cheap dime store appearing studs in the center of her cheeks. Smaller studs behind the bottom curve of her brow.

    WTF?

    gary gulrud (e2cef3)

  10. Asian and Asian American applicants to the US’s elite colleges and universities routinely present impressive HS records and score so high on standardized tests that if only objective measures are applied Asians would outscore other applicants to the extent they would overwhelmingly dominate incoming classes.

    Elite schools won’t admit it but they rely on a hidden quota system which discriminates against well-qualified Asian applicants and accepts deeply deficient minority students to maintain the appearance of diversity on campus.

    The highest qualified white students still find acceptance, but their only slightly less qualified peers are squeezed out between the over representation of high scoring Asians and the growing presence of significantly under qualified affirmative action applicants. Moreover, when gender is factored in, it’s undeniable that white males should be on an endangered species list.

    ropelight (66d267)

  11. Coddling dependency kills initiative. Being challenged to overcome even unfair obstacles is a significant advantage.

    We need to expect people to grow up.

    Amphipolis (d3e04f)

  12. Asian Chinese-American grading scale (Yes, you’ve seen it before.):

    A — Average
    B — Below average
    C — Can’t have dinner
    D — Don’t come home
    F — Find a new family

    I object to the word “Asian”, BTW. Seriously. Turks are Asians. Heck, Israelis are Asians. Osama bin Laden was Asian. Why don’t we call them by their nationality and not their continent?

    nk (dbc370)

  13. 13. Nikkei down 3% this AM.

    Pakis are ‘Asians’ in GB.

    George Z. is a White Hispanic of African-American heritage.

    I’m confused.

    gary gulrud (e2cef3)

  14. How amazing it is that scholars can attribute academic — and later life — success of a particular racial and ethnic group to a cultural trait which encourages hard work, and it’s not raaaaacist in the slightest, but if someone were to suggest that there is a particular ethnic or racial group with a cultural norm which discourages hard work and practically encourages dropping out of school, why he’d be practically a Klan member.

    The brutally honest Dana (3e4784)

  15. Malcolm Gladwell noted the same thing and attributed it to the intellectual and physical challenges of cultivating rice in China. He found that there were many varieties of rice and to be successful, the rice farmer had to understand the requirements of the various varieties and match that them the nature of the site. He also found that it took long hours and hard work. And the hard work paid off big time. Mix that with the Rule of Law, and you’ve got a potent formula for success. Mix that with medieval “utopias” (aristocracies parading around as workers’ paradises, for example) and you’ve got exploited peasants.

    bobathome (3afd95)

  16. Arrgh!!! Make that “match them with the nature of the site” … need more coffee.

    bobathome (3afd95)

  17. We’ve all typed in the wrong fusebox in a comment one or another, bobathome.

    I’d like to expand on your point. Rationality, specifically the scientific method, seeking to understand the world through observation and experiment; and freedom of thought, “going beyond our fathers’ sayings”; are not totally exclusive to Western civilization but they are its hallmarks. Western civilization is an environment where a quick mind, and an industrious attitude flourish.

    nk (dbc370)

  18. *one time or another*

    nk (dbc370)

  19. Tiger Moms rule!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  20. She had these cheap dime store appearing studs in the center of her cheeks. Smaller studs behind the bottom curve of her brow.

    I think of people like her when the old line is brought out (mainly by the left) that “he/she can’t help — absolutely cannot help!! — be the way he/she is! He or she therefore must be accommodated both socially and politically.” A mindset that isn’t far removed from the ethos of “the business absolutely must bake a wedding cake for the customer and his husband!”

    I recall a lawsuit brought by a young woman in Orange County, California several years ago who was told by her employer that her metal tongue stud wasn’t acceptable. I don’t recall all the details, but she prevailed in the litigation and her boss had to accept her preferences.

    The cheap ideology of compassion for compassion’s sake will be the undoing of this society. Or the attitude of: “Attentiveness, self-control, motivation and persistence are old-fogey traits and a child shouldn’t be forced to adhere to them. Give him or her instead a lot of hugs and compassion, and tell the child to ‘do your own thang!”

    wnd.com, October 2006: You run a fashionable restaurant with a dress code for employees and customers that discourages pierced tongues and noses. You are a personnel director at an upscale department store known for customer service and refuse to hire women with prominent tattoos. You supervise a supermarket and require those with pierced body parts who handle food to remove the piercings before reporting to work.

    According to legal experts in employment law, if you fit any of these categories, you are setting yourself up for lawsuits from members of a new activist lobby representing the ever-growing population of those into “body modification.”

    Laws prohibiting discrimination based on appearance and behavior of this sort already have been passed in several cities in California, and restrictions against tattoos and piercing are breaking down all over the country as the trend becomes a craze among young people.

    In fact, 49 percent of Americans ages 18 to 29 have tattoos, according to a 2004 Harris Poll. A study recently published in the Journal of American Academy of Dermatology indicated 24 percent of people ages 18 to 50 have at least one tattoo.

    There are even children’s books like “Mommy Has a Tattoo” and the “Tattoo Coloring Book.” The topic of tattoos and body piercing is one of the hottest for campus speakers. Major corporations are working the “hip” new trend into their TV commercials and ad campaigns. And as tattoos and piercings become more common, some zealots are moving to extremes once unthinkable.

    Just as “Heather Has Two Mommies” is now required reading for kindergartners in some school districts, how long will it be before the tolerance police mandate Phil Padwe’s new books. He’s the author and illustrator of the two new children’s books on tattoos. In “Mommy Has a Tattoo,” a little boy, James, is afraid of a heavily tattooed neighbor – until he realizes his mother has one, too.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  21. I think it is a mistake to assume that “Western civilization” is uniformly conducive to success. Certainly extraordinary people were able to advance science and the art of inquiry in the 15th thru 18th centuries, but most of the empires in Europe were not easy places to exercise your conscience. England was quite remarkable for its common law and the willingness to engage in regicide, but it really took the quasi-independent American colonies to advance the concept of individual rights within a political structure. The French Revolution and Bonaparte demonstrate the primitive nature of their political development in contrast to our situation, which is rightly characterized as exceptionalism. And communism, despite its “theoretical” perfection, is really nothing more than an elite despotism, supported by lots of proganda that reassures the masses that their misery is shared by all … all except party members, of course, since someone needs to make the enlightened decisions about who lives and who dies. It’s and aristocracy with lipstick.

    bobathome (3afd95)

  22. 21. Mark-do you honestly worry that silly faddy tattoos and eyebrow studs are high up on the list of great threats to western civilization as we knew it? Because my list looks a bit different. (And no– don’t bother “detecting” that I am prolly a closet tattoo artist.)

    elissa (770ecb)

  23. Elissa, if out of all that you come up with “silly faddy tattoos…are [not] high on the list of great threats to…,” instead of realizing such instances are perfect examples of the mentality of cheap self-entitlement infused with plenty of cheap compassion run amok, and which is roiling society, then all I can say is: Squish, squish. But you’re forgiven, since, after all, you are immersed in dyed-in-the-wool blue, true-blue Illinois, one of the paradises of modern-day liberalism.

    blogs.marketwatch.com, May 1, 2014: Illinois and Connecticut boast the largest percentage of residents who if given the opportunity would move to a different state, according to a Gallup poll. Half of those in Illinois would pack up, and 49% of those in Connecticut would do the same — well above the average of 33% across the U.S.

    Illinois residents cite taxes as a big reason, while the high cost of living is a big factor in Connecticut.

    Residents’ dissatisfaction in the two states may not just be idle talk. Some 19% of Illinois residents polled told Gallup they are extremely likely to leave the state in the next 12 months…

    Mark (99b8fd)

  24. If you attempt to enlist in the United States Army, and you have any tattoos which will be visible while in uniform, you will be politely told that you are ineligible to join.

    The Army-daddy Dana (3e4784)

  25. I think they were comparing people attending the same schools.

    The difference between schools is probably far greater, although it also depends on how much they want to do well.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  26. Aw, Dana, you be actin’ so white.

    nk (dbc370)

  27. I think flip-flops are a threat to western civ.
    I’m not joking.

    Elephant Stone (6a6f37)

  28. “But you’re forgiven, since, after all, you are immersed in dyed-in-the-wool blue, true-blue Illinois, one of the paradises of modern-day liberalism.”

    Mark – I grew up in one of the highest rated public school districts in New York and raised my children in one of the highest rated public school districts in Illinois, both places bastions of liberalism. That’s one reason why I always laugh when I see your uninformed sweeping generalities based on political. But that’s just me.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  29. I forgot to type “ding”, “sober” Dana.

    felipe (098e97)

  30. political ideology

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  31. Oh noes! Tattoo and Flip-Flop Night at the old ballpark is going to be brutal on the psyches of some of y’all.

    elissa (770ecb)

  32. Do they give out tattoos and flip-flops on those nights, Elissa?

    felipe (098e97)

  33. elissa knows I only go to the ballpark for one reason. I’m not looking at feet.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  34. Flip-Flop Night sounds like a double bill of Barack Obama, preceded by opening act John F. Kerry.

    Elephant Stone (6a6f37)

  35. 21. Mark-do you honestly worry that silly faddy tattoos and eyebrow studs are high up on the list of great threats to western civilization as we knew it? Because my list looks a bit different. (And no– don’t bother “detecting” that I am prolly a closet tattoo artist.)

    Comment by elissa (770ecb) — 5/7/2014 @ 7:49 am

    If you’d told me years ago that one day there’d be young people walkin’ the streets of my town with green hair and bones in their noses I wouldn’t have believed you. It’s signs and wonders and the dismal tide. You stop hearing “sir” and “ma’am” and it’s all down hill from there.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  36. Here’s a good column ranting against flip-flops.

    http://www.slate.com/articles/life/a_fine_whine/2013/07/against_flip_flops_put_a_shoe_on_you_slob.html

    Elephant Stone (6a6f37)

  37. This is no country for old men, Colonel.

    felipe (098e97)

  38. Damn straight, felipe!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  39. The Seattle school board took this down.
    http://www.halfsigma.com/2006/05/is_future_time_.html

    The likelihood they’re still teaching it, though, is pretty high.

    Yup. Culture matters and cultures try to continue themselves.

    Richard Aubrey (0605ef)

  40. That’s one reason why I always laugh when I see your uninformed sweeping generalities based on political.

    Elissa, so you’re saying that the generalization that in today’s era an attitude of lazy self-entitlement and self-indulgence combined with an increasingly shameless demeanor — all topped off with a dumbed-down sense of right and wrong — is more apparent and pervasive than in the past is not correct or applicable? If so, and if you don’t think a left-leaning bias is inculcating such a change in culture, then, again, you’re being awfully squishy.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  41. That was daley, Mark, not elissa.

    Steve57 (e86077)

  42. Oops, you’re correct, Steve57. I don’t know why I thought the post was from Elissa, but that probably was because it dealt with kids and their schools, and so I immediately thought “mother” and, in turn, female.

    Regardless, I’ve detected more than a bit of squish in at least a few of the regulars here at patterico, which is why the left has an easier time in emotionally scamming or exploiting millions of people, even those who should know better.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  43. Believe it or not, Mark, but a lot of dads also care about their kids and what schools they attend.

    Steve57 (e86077)

  44. “Regardless, I’ve detected more than a bit of squish in at least a few of the regulars here at patterico”

    Mark – Regardless, I’ve detected that “squish” is one of your favorite words and that you like to employ it when you are at a loss for anything worthwhile to say.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  45. daleyrocks, your resentment reminds me of the response that nk had to one of my comments a few days ago, where he mocked the phrase “compassion for compassion’s sake.” I went “hmm” at the time and wondered if his reaction was a sign of something below the surface. A sign of…SQUISH!

    A few days later I noticed his getting all teary eyed over crummy, corrupt liberal Franklin D Roosevelt and then my original assumptions were confirmed.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  46. Squish = Witch!

    felipe (098e97)

  47. ==Oops, you’re correct, Steve57. I don’t know why I thought the post was from Elissa, but that probably was because it dealt with kids and their schools, and so I immediately thought “mother” and, in turn, female.==

    Well wow. That excuse makes all the sense in the world, Mark, especially since each comment here is clearly “signed” by the writer.

    elissa (770ecb)

  48. Mark, your nonsensical nonresponsive response reminds me of your prior nonsensical nonresponsive responses.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  49. “Well wow. That excuse makes all the sense in the world, Mark, especially since each comment here is clearly “signed” by the writer”

    Steve57, this doesn’t sound like you; it sounds more like daleyrocks, but bolder.

    felipe (098e97)

  50. LOL, felipe.

    elissa (770ecb)

  51. A clear case of gender confusion, which actually is rather fashionable and hip in today’s era.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  52. Mark, is English your primary language? Because “compassion for compassion’s sake” is a totally nonsensical phrase. Compassion, by definition, in the English I understand and speak, exists only for its own sake. It is a feeling people have for other human beings. It is instinctive, it is unconditional and undemanding, and it is not bought, sold, or exchanged for anything.

    You seem to me have problems with communication. You have a handful of stock phrases that you continuously parrot in random strings, and most of the time they don’t make sense. Is English your primary language?

    nk (dbc370)

  53. Because “compassion for compassion’s sake” is a totally nonsensical phrase.

    nk, I might buy your conjecture if you weren’t also prone to get all gushy over FDR.

    BTW, the more I’ve learned about Roosevelt through the years, the more disdain I have for him.

    Mark (99b8fd)

  54. nk, you are disdained by association.

    felipe (098e97)

  55. “A clear case of gender confusion, which actually is rather fashionable and hip in today’s era.”

    Mark – I detect that to be a very squishy comment.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  56. con·jec·ture
    /kənˈjekCHər/
    noun: conjecture; plural noun: conjectures
    1. an opinion or conclusion formed on the basis of incomplete information.
    “conjectures about the newcomer were many and varied”
    synonyms:
    speculation, guesswork, surmise, fancy, presumption, assumption, theory, postulation, supposition;

    com·pas·sion
    /kəmˈpaSHən/
    noun: compassion; plural noun: compassions
    sympathetic pity and concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others.
    “the victims should be treated with compassion”
    synonyms:
    pity, sympathy, empathy, fellow feeling, care, concern, solicitude, sensitivity, warmth, love, tenderness, mercy, leniency, tolerance, kindness, humanity, charity

    English, @#$%^&&& Mark! Do you speak it?

    nk (dbc370)

  57. because of cultural beliefs that emphasize the strong connection between effort and achievement,”

    Used to be that way for Anglo Americans, too, if not all Americans.

    I blame Horace Mann.

    Smock Puppet, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  58. I blame the dismal tide and those among us who have no clue how to parent. Oh, and the goddam Left.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  59. I hardly create remarks, but i did some searching and wound up here Patterico’s Pontifications
    Confirming What A Lot Of Us Have Long Believed. And I actually do have a few questions for you if you don’t mind.
    Is it simply me or does it seem like some of the remarks appear like coming from brain dead folks?
    :-P And, if you are writing at other online social sites,
    I would like to follow everything fresh you have
    to post. Could you list of every one of all your public sites like your twitter feed, Facebook page or linkedin profile?

    My homepage; Toronto Family Law Firm (Google.Ca)

    Google.Ca (9d3ca7)


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