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Stephens et al., 2014: Reflecting on social class challenges and how to overcome them improved academic performance and physiological thriving among first-generation college students over one to two years


Stephens, N. M., Hamedani, M. G., & Destin, M. (2014). Closing the social-class achievement gap: A difference-education intervention improves first-generation students’ academic performance and all students’ college transition. Psychological science, 25(4), 943-953.
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A panel discussion that provided first-generation college students information about how students’ social-class backgrounds affect their experiences in college, including unique challenges faced by first-generation students and how students overcome these with time, as compared to a panel discussion that did not link college experiences to students’ social-class background, reduced the social-class achievement gap in first-year GPA among students at a selective college by 63%. A follow-up 2 years later found that the intervention improved anabolic balance, a measure of physiological thriving, while students engaged in stressful tasks (Stephens et al., 2015)

Psychological Process:

Psychological Process 2:


What is the Person Trying to Understand?

What Desired Meaning is At Stake?

What Desired Meaning is At Stake?

What About it?

Approach to Desired Meaning

Approach to Desired Meaning


Psychological Question Addressed

Psychological Question Addressed

Psychological Question Addressed

Psychological Process 3:

Social Area:

Intervention Technique:

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Greg Walton & Timothy Wilson