How Best to Prepare Students for Life Success?

One of the many delights from the Stanford’s recent conference on teaching introductory psychology was being with and hearing Boise State professor Eric Landrum.  The exuberant Landrum is a longtime teaching-of-psychology leader, researcher, and author—and the 2014 president of the Society of the Teaching of Psychology.

His presentation offered his “all-time favorite PowerPoint slide.”  It summarizes the conclusions of research by Michigan State’s Collegiate Employment Research Institute showing the main reasons why new college grads get fired.  These include: Lack of work ethic, failure to follow instructions, missing assignments or deadlines, and being late. 

Sound familiar?  Landrum, who studies what helps students succeed, draws a moral from these findings:  By simulating a real world employer, and holding to standards, he is doing them a great favor.  He is preparing them for real world success.