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Front. Educ. | doi: 10.3389/feduc.2019.00025

Patience! How to assess and strengthen self-control

  • 1Risk-Eraser, LLC, United States

Children often show signs of dysregulation, impulsivity, and risk-taking  behaviors that interfere with learning and growth. Commonly implicated in such interfering behaviors are problems of self-control. Several decades of research in the mind and brain sciences inform understanding of self-control, both as a trait and state. This research has significant implications for educators, providing strategies for assessing and strengthening self-control. This paper reviews the relevant theoretical concepts and practical applications. Part one discusses current thinking about the nature of self-control, focusing on the paired distinctions between (i) trait and state, as well as (ii) volitional and impulsive processes. Part two reviews a family of methods designed to assess different aspects of self-control. Part three focuses on ways to strength self-control, including simple strategies that help create habits and reduce conflict with competing temptations.

Keywords: Self-Control, self-regulated learning, asssessment, strengthening, trait, state, Volitional, impulsive

Received: 05 Nov 2018; Accepted: 07 Mar 2019.

Edited by:

Douglas F. Kauffman, Medical University of the Americas – Nevis, United States

Reviewed by:

Sherri Horner, Bowling Green State University, United States
Meryem YILMAZ SOYLU, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, United States  

Copyright: © 2019 Hauser. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Marc D. Hauser, Risk-Eraser, LLC, West Falmouth, United States, marc@risk-eraser.com