Individual differences in education outcomes: Applying a model of mental toughness

Sarah P. McGeown, Helen St Clair-Thompson, Dave Putwain, Peter Clough

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


In the study of individual differences in education outcomes, researchers often focus on cognitive (e.g., language) or non-cognitive (e.g., motivation) variables to predict these outcomes. In this chapter, we focus on non-cognitive predictors and discuss the model of mental toughness, a set of attributes characterised by the following traits: challenge, commitment, control (life and emotions) and confidence (interpersonal and abilities). The extent to which these traits align with more commonly studied non-cognitive attributes (e.g., motivation, resilience) are discussed, as are new research findings applying the mental toughness model in education settings (specifically secondary school and higher education). In addition, proposals to use this model to better understand a range of education outcomes, from primary to higher education, are considered.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPsychology of Individual Differences
Subtitle of host publicationNew Research
EditorsEleanor Roberson
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9781634845397
ISBN (Print)9781634845083
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes


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