Emphasis added. This is why higher education's dependence on adjunct labor is so toxic. Every indicator from the institution tells the adjunct that he or she is not valued: low pay, no health insurance, no sick pay, no benefits, no permanent status -- only contingent status. For someone that wants to teach, and for whom that life would make one happy, working as an adjunct causes alienation, which results in a lack of motivation, and the concomitant poorer student performance. I say this as someone who has seen the instructors end a four-hour class at the midpoint because that's when the attendance software allows us to enter in attendance. Toxic, toxic.
But in 2003, the admissions staff looked at the data and discovered that reflectiveness did not seem to matter either. Or more accurately, trying to predict reflectiveness in the hiring process did not work.What did predict success, interestingly, was a history of perseverance—not just an attitude, but a track record. In the interview process, Teach for America now asks applicants to talk about overcoming challenges in their lives—and ranks their perseverance based on their answers.
But another trait seemed to matter even more. Teachers who scored high in “life satisfaction”—reporting that they were very content with their lives—were 43 percent more likely to perform well in the classroom than their less satisfied colleagues. These teachers “may be more adept at engaging their pupils, and their zest and enthusiasm may spread to their students,” the study suggested.