New Grants for Character Research

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Having good character is essential for social, personal, and vocational success. Young people need to be nurtured to develop an open mindset and virtues that will enable them to respond well to what life brings.

Character Lab aims to discover ideas and strategies that build character, translate those ideas to good use, and ensure that people who work with students implement results into schools and homes. The strengths that seem crucial include grit—perseverance and passion in achieving long-term goals; self-control—the capacity to regulate attention, emotion, and behavior; and pro-social purpose—the desire to accomplish things that are both meaningful for the individual and for the wider world.

In an effort to move this promising field forward, Character Lab is awarding a total of $1.2 million in grants to support two-year, school-based research projects focused on character development in 5th through 12th grade students. The grants, supported by the John Templeton Foundation, will enable the study of interventions in the 2015-16 and 2016-17 school years. Each proposal may request up to $300,000 and letters of intent are due by September 1, 2014. Full details are available online.