Current Psychology

, Volume 35, Issue 1, pp 121–130 | Cite as

Perseverance Counts but Consistency Does Not! Validating the Short Grit Scale in a Collectivist Setting

  • Jesus Alfonso D. Datu
  • Jana Patricia M. Valdez
  • Ronnel B. King


The present research aims to validate the Short Grit Scale (Duckworth et al. Journal of Personality Assessment 91:166–174, 2009) among a sample of university (n = 220) and high school students (n = 606) from a collectivist culture (i.e., the Philippines) using both within-network and between-network approaches to construct validation. Our results revealed interesting cross-cultural differences in grit. First, grit was comprised of two distinct dimensions rather than as a hierarchical construct. Only the perseverance of effort dimension loaded onto the higher-order grit factor. Second, perseverance of effort was more salient in predicting key psychological outcomes (i.e., academic engagement and subjective well-being) compared to consistency of interests. This suggests that in collectivist cultures, the perseverance of effort dimension of grit is more relevant compared to the consistency of interest. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.


Academic engagement Filipino students Grit Subjective well-being 



We thank Ms. Rosario T. Argana for her significant assistance in the data collection phase of Study 2.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

There is no conflict of interest in the present study as the authors did not receive funds from any institution.


  1. Bernardo, A. B. I. (2004). McKinley’s questionable bequest: over 100 years of English in Philippine Education. World Englishes, 23, 17–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Byrne, B. M. (2010). Structural equation modelling with AMOS: basic concepts, applications, and programming (2nd ed.). Mahwah: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  3. Cheung, G. W., & Rensvold, R. B. (2002). Evaluating goodness-of-fit indexes for testing measurement invariance. Structural Equation Modeling: A Multidisciplinary Journal, 9, 233–255.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Church, A. T., Alvarez, J. M., Katigbak, M. S., Mastor, K. A., Cabrera, H. F., Tanaka-Matsumi, J., et al. (2012). Self-concept consistency and short-term stability in eight cultures. Journal of Research in Personality, 46, 556–570. doi: 10.1016/j.jrp.2012.06.003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Choi, I., & Choi, Y. (2002). Culture and self-concept flexibility. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 28(11), 1508–1517.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Datu, J. A. D. (2014). Validating the revised self-construal scale in the Philippines. Current Psychology. doi: 10.1007/s12144-014-9275-9.Google Scholar
  7. Dimitrov, D. (2010). Testing for factorial invariance in the context of construct validation. Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development, 43, 121–149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Duckworth, A. L., Kirby, T., Tsukayama, E., Berstein, H., & Ericsson, K. (2010). Deliberate practice spells success: why grittier competitors triumph at the National Spelling Bee. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 2, 174–181.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Duckworth, A. L., Peterson, C., Matthews, M. D., & Kelly, D. R. (2007). Grit: perseverance and passion for long-term goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 92, 1087–1101.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Duckworth, A. L., & Quinn, P. D. (2009). Development and validation of the Short Grit Scale (Grit-S). Journal of Personality Assessment, 91, 166–174.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Duckworth, A. L., Quinn, P. D., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2009). Positive predictors of teacher 700 effectiveness. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 4(6), 540–547.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Eskreis-Winkler, L., Shulman, E. P., Beal, S. A., & Duckworth, A. L. (2014). The grit effect: predicting retention in the military, the workplace, school and marriage. Frontiers in Personality Science and Individual Differences, 5(36), 1–12.Google Scholar
  13. Finney, S. J., & DiStefano, C. (2006). Non-normal and categorical data in structural equation modeling. In G. R. Hancock & R. O. Mueller (Eds.), Structural equation modeling: a second course (pp. 269–314). Greenwich: Information Age.Google Scholar
  14. Ganotice, F. A., Bernardo, A. B. I., & King, R. B. (2012). Testing the factorial invariance of the English and Filipino versions of the Inventory of School Motivation with bilingual students in the Philippines. Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, 30(3), 298–303.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Gottfredson, L. S. (1997). Why g matters: The complexity of everyday life. Intelligence, 24, 79--132.Google Scholar
  16. Heine, S. J. (2001). Self as cultural product: an examination of East Asian and North American selves. Journal of Personality, 69, 881–905.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Henrich, J., Heine, S. J., & Norenzayan, A. (2010). Most people are not WEIRD. Nature, 466, 29.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Hofstede, G. (1980). Culture's Consequences: International Differences in Work-Related Values. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  19. Hu, L. T., & Bentler, P. M. (1995). Measuring model fit. In R. H. Hoyle (Ed.), Structural equation modeling: concepts, issues and applications. Thousand Oaks: Sage.Google Scholar
  20. Hu, L. T., & Bentler, P. M. (1999). Cutoff criteria for fit indexes in covariance structure analysis: conventional criteria versus new alternatives. Structural Equation Modeling, 6, 1–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. King, R. B., McInerney, D. M., & Watkins, D. A. (2012). Studying for the sake of others: the role of social goals on academic engagement. Educational Psychology, 32, 749–776.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. King, R. B., McInerney, D. M., & Watkins, D. A. (2013). Examining the role of social goals in school: a study in two collectivist cultures. European Journal of Psychology of Education, 28, 1505–1523.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. King, R. B., & Watkins, D. A. (2012). Cross-cultural validation of the five-factor structure of social goals. Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, 30(2), 181–193.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Kleiman, E. M., Adams, L. M., Kashdan, T. B., & Riskind, J. H. (2013). Gratitude and grit indirectly reduce risk of suicidal ideations by enhancing meaning in life: evidence for a mediated moderation model. Journal of Research in Personality, 47, 539–546.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kuncel, N. R., Hezlett, S. A., & Ones, D. S. (2001). A comprehensive meta-analysis of the predictive validity of the graduate record examinations: Implications for graduate student selection and performance. Psychological Bulletin, 127, 162–181.Google Scholar
  26. Kwan, V. S. Y., Bond, M. H., & Singelis, T. M. (1997). Pancultural explanations for life satisfaction: adding relationship harmony to self-esteem. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 73(5), 1038–1051.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. MacKinnon, A., Jorm, A. F., Christensen, H., Korten, A. E., Jacomb, P. A., & Rodgers, B. (1999). A short form of the positive and negative affect schedule: evaluation of factorial validity and invariance across demographic variables in a community sample. Personality and Individual Differences, 27, 405–416.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Markus, H., & Kitayama, S. (1991). Culture and the self: implications for cognition, emotion, and motivation. Psychological Review, 98, 224–253.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Marsh, H. W. (1993). The multidimensional structure of physical fitness: Invariance over gender and age. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 64, 256--273.Google Scholar
  30. Marsh, H. W. (1997). The measurement of physical self-concept: A construct validation approach. In K. Fox (Ed.), The physical self: From motivation to well-being (pp. 27--58). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.Google Scholar
  31. Peng, K., & Nisbett, R. (1999). Culture, dialectics, and reasoning about contradiction. American Psychologist, 54, 741–754.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Reed, J., Pritschet, B. L., & Cutton, D. M. (2013). Grit, conscientiousness, and the transtheoretical model of change for exercise behavior. Journal of Health Psychology, 18(5), 612–619.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. Skinner, E. A., Kindermann, T. A., & Furrer, C. (2009). A motivational perspective on engagement and disaffection: conceptualization and assessment of children’s behavioral and emotional participation in academic activities in the classroom. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 69, 493–525.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Suh, E. M. (2002). Culture, identity consistency, and subjective well-being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 83, 1378–1391.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  35. Suh, E. M. (2007). Downsides of an overly context-sensitive self: implications from the culture and subjective well-being research. Journal of Personality, 75(6), 1331–1343.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Suh, E. M., & Koo, J. (2011). A Concise Measure of Subjective Well-Being (COMOSWB): Scale development and validation. Korean Journal of Social and Personality Psychology, 25, 96--114.Google Scholar
  37. Von Culin, K., Tsukayama, E., & Duckworth, A. L. (2014). Unpacking grit: motivational correlates of perseverance and passion for long-term goals. Journal of Positive Psychology. doi: 10.1080/17439760.2014.898320.Google Scholar
  38. Wong, N., Rindfleisch, A., & Burroughs, J. E. (2003). Do reverse-worded items confound measures in cross-cultural consumer research? The case of the Material Values Scale. Journal of Consumer Research, 30, 72–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Zhou, J. (2014). Persistence motivations of Chinese doctoral students in science, technology, engineering, and math in the U.S. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, 7, 177–193.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jesus Alfonso D. Datu
    • 1
  • Jana Patricia M. Valdez
    • 2
  • Ronnel B. King
    • 3
  1. 1.Division of Learning, Development, and Diversity Faculty of EducationThe University of Hong KongPok Fu LamHong Kong
  2. 2.De La Salle UniversityManilaPhilippines
  3. 3.Department of Curriculum and InstructionThe Hong Kong Institute of EducationTai PoHong Kong

Personalised recommendations