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Early Specialization is Out: Sampling is In

For too long, we’ve believed in a narrow path to getting ahead: start early, specialize, eliminate distractions, and deliberatively practice for at least 10,000 hours. For students on a college prep path, following a path like this has resulted in an unprecedented rise in anxiety, stress, and distress levels and an unprecedented fall in preparedness for college, work, and life.

But in this groundbreaking work, David Epstein presents the research to effectively challenge the specialization path – good news for parents (and teachers) and their kids.

Epstein shows that those who specialize early may advance more quickly in the short term, but in virtually every field, generalists who have sampled widely, made mistakes, and taken detours are primed to excel in the long term - and to find work that is more enjoyable and meaningful to them and is more valued in the world.

“As experts silo themselves further while computers master more of the skills once reserved for highly focused humans, people who think broadly and embrace diverse experiences and perspectives will increasingly thrive.” From Range: Why Generalists Triumph is a Specialized World.

1 Comment

Such an important book and a must read for all parents. Here's a good interview (6:56) with Epstein by Malcolm Gladwell that focuses on this book (Range) -

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