View Poll Results: Do teenagers today require more or less instant gratification?

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  • More

    11 61.11%
  • Same

    6 33.33%
  • Less

    1 5.56%
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  1. #16
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    The test involves random selection of teenagers and telling them to select a treat from this range of treats (box containing a range of lollies and chocolate bars etc)
    Then two plates are laid out in front of the teenager, one plate contains one treat, and the other contains two of the same treat.
    The the teenager is told you can have the plate with the one treat now, or wait and have the plate with the two later.
    Bob, the problem with this "test" is that it does not include a measure of motivation or desire. My definition of a reward is that it must fullfill two conditions: the item must be desireable, and it must be accessible. What is being assessed here is the ability to wait, that is, how they deal with accessibility, which is not defined in terms of time - the issue of time awareness is a huge one, which is beyond a simple reply here. They have also not determined whether the prize is desirable to the same level for all.

    Junk research.

    Regards from Perth

    Derek
    Visit www.inthewoodshop.com for tutorials on constructing handtools, handtool reviews, and my trials and tribulations with furniture builds.

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  3. #17
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    The second article (even though it relates to young children and not teenagers) is very interesting and this quote is particularly so

    We demonstrated that children’s sustained decisions to wait for a greater reward rather than quickly taking a lesser reward are strongly influenced by the reliability of the environment (in this case, the reliability of the researcher’s verbal assurances). More broadly, we have shown that young children’s performance on delay-of-gratification tasks can be strongly influenced by an implicit rational decision-making process.
    Then we have to ask who has created the environment in which the children are operating - of course its all of us.
    So if anyone is to blame its us.

    It reminds me of my Paediatrician school mate who sees a lot of kids for eating disorders. In the vast majority of the cases it's not the kids that need treating, its the parents that "need work". Derek, I think we have discussed this before?

  4. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by derekcohen View Post
    Bob, the problem with this "test" is that it does not include a measure of motivation or desire. My definition of a reward is that it must fullfill two conditions: the item must be desireable, and it must be accessible. What is being assessed here is the ability to wait, that is, how they deal with accessibility, which is not defined in terms of time - the issue of time awareness is a huge one, which is beyond a simple reply here. They have also not determined whether the prize is desirable to the same level for all.
    Sure - I agree most if not all of these "tests" have limitations. And I'd like to think that Aussie kids might even be different. I should have stated in the poll more explicitly what the test was. Even If I had, I doubt it would have changed the result of the poll. We always think the worst of the next generation - its kind of built into our DNA. I used to think that way but even given the way we have treated them I have high hopes.

    I have been thinking about your examples of the comic book coupons and the chess game by letters. We had no choice - if we were told we could do it instantly back then I wonder how many of us would have chosen to use snail mail? I am reminded of what my 93 year old MIL and the late queen mum used to say, "always avail oneself of any facilities whether you need to or not"

    As for the telephone, that's an easy one, if you don't answer, callers do eventually stop calling.

  5. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by derekcohen View Post
    Junk research.
    Agreed, but from a non-professional view of course.

    I answered the question as it was posed (as I was always instructed to do in High School....in the 1970s btw), but as someone else pointed out, if it had been about adults, old age pensioners or anyone else, my answer would have been the same. That is simply because the internet has provided the tool for instant gratification - which OF COURSE would have been used in the 70s had it existed. Just like power machinery would have been used in the 17th Century rather than hand tools, if it had existed. There is no question about that. ("Hey Mr Cabinet maker, would you prefer to make 10 tables per week, or just one, for the same unit price")

    I don't think the worst of the generations coming through....not at all. I don't know if there are more dropkicks amongst them (per capita), but even if there are it was the current older generations that bred the newer ones the way they are.
    Regards, FenceFurniture

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  6. #20
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    Just this morning there was an article relating that teenagers in foster care in Texas are five times more likely to become teen parents. The Texas state and private authorities responsible for various child protection programs have a long history of tragedy.
    Innovations are those useful things that, by dint of chance, manage to survive the stupidity and destructive tendencies inherent in human nature.

  7. #21
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    I don't know that I have much to contribute beyond what has already been said, but maybe there is some value or interest here.

    I remember well when I was young the predictions of me ending up in gaol, long haired louts who would never amount to anything. When I look at my friends kids today, late teens and 20's I am truly amazed at how together and successful so many of them are. Not just professional careers either, they are killing every aspect of life. Yep some fall by the way, but compared to my generation they are miles ahead.

    I spent most of my working life in research, albeit physics, manufacturing etc not humanities. I submit however this truth applies: A lot of research is garbage driven more by politics and the principles belief system than good scientific method. I was so often appalled by what I saw being published and how profoundly stupid so many academics are. Read the work, but be skeptical about everything, and check teh raw data. If it's obfuscated be suspicious.

    At the risk of hijacking the thread I would suggest that the internet is in no way the problem. It is after all just a conduit. I have long railed against the increasing disparity in developed countries between rich and poor, and the increasing anonymity. Before you go thinking I'm another lefty nutter stop right there. I have railed just as hard against the demonstrably stupid solutions of the left. They fail. They have always failed. But you can demonstrate that governments deregulating the economy as Hawk did in the 80's giving pillagers free reign creates a society full of resentment, fractured. When people are no longer invested in a common community the incentive to adhere to the social contract diminishes. When I was young we had one of the most egalitarian societies in the world. If people misbehaved word got around town and employment and social opportunities dried up. The poorest felt they were within reach of middle class comfort and the richest were a visible part of the same world. We lost that in the 80's. Now there are no consequences to stealing a car, going to gaol and little hope for many young people of a job that pays better than a waiter.

    And all the while the media keep telling us how much better everything is...
    I'm just a startled bunny in the headlights of life. L.J. Young.
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  8. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobl View Post
    it will come out in due time.

    mmm,

  9. #23
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    The other side of this goes along with what Derek posted.... The correct answer is that the world is different now and kids have to live in this world - not in the past.... It's illegal to apprentice your kids off to the trades at 10 or 13 like Great Grandpa did.. Illegal to hire out your 10 year old boy out to factories to sweep the floors or carry hods...

    Well guess what - there was no deferred gratification in that world for most... No deferring anything for several years... You work now and you get paid now... A day's work for a day's pay.. This means you can have a family or buy things now - not later... And the reason the blacksmith or the jointer was a journeyman at 18 or 19 is not because they were "better" or "Worked harder".... It's because they had been working full time for 6-8 years by that age... And they had 6-8 years of working and doing the job and learning the business on the fellow who went to secondary school.....

    And so my answer is that it's much better now - except that now those opportunities don't even exist...

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