Mindfulness and academic performance
Academic achievement measured in terms of course and examination grades, degree completion rates, and other concrete criteria, usually represents a “bottom line” for any new educational supplement. One study has examined the effect of meditative practice on examination grades among both college and middle school students.
In a randomized controlled trial with college students, Hall (1999) randomly assigned 56 undergraduates to two study groups, one of which included concentration-based meditation. The meditation intervention included a one-hour session of meditation instruction twice a week for the academic semester, which included guidance in a simple attentional focusing and in relaxation exercises. Meditation was practiced for 10 minutes at the start and conclusion of each one-hour study group session, and this group was instructed to meditate at home and before exams. The control group also met for one hour of study a week but was not introduced to meditation. The groups did not differ in grade point average (GPA) at the beginning of the study, but at the end of the Spring academic semester after the Fall semester training, the treatment group had significantly higher GPA scores compared to the control group.
Hall, P. D. (1999). The effect of meditation on the academic performance of African American college students. Journal of Black Studies, 29 (3), 408–415.