Helping students choose well: making it seem like a good idea at the time

Would you rather:

  • Snack on fruit or chocolate?
  • Watch Schindler’s List or Four Weddings and a Funeral?

Your answer may depend – in part – on how far in advance you are asked.  When choosing a snack for today or a film for tonight, people tend to choose the less ‘virtuous’ option: junk food, romantic comedy.  When choosing for next week however, people choose healthy snacks and highbrow films (Read, Loewenstein and Kalyanarman, 1999).  In the moment, we embrace immediate benefits with distant costs, and resist costly actions conferring distant benefits: it seems like a good idea at the time.

Source: Helping students choose well: making it seem like a good idea at the time

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About teachingbattleground

I teach
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