Recommended Reading

Each semester, we will provide a reading list of 4-7 books that GW parents and family members should consider reading that include useful tips or provide insight into college parenting, college students, or higher education generally.  Most, if not all, titles should be available at your local library.  Please write me (gwfamilies@gwu.edu) if there are titles we should post for the following semester.

Bruni, Frank, Where You Go Is Not Who You Will Be: An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania.  New York: Grand Central Publishing, 2015.

A refreshing perspective from a New York Times columnist on college admissions and career aspirations for those parents who have high school students as well as parents who are supporting current college students' career journeys.

Lythcott-Haims, Julie, How to Raise an Adult: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success.  New York: HHenry Holt & Co: 2015.

Lythcott-Haims, a former dean at Stanford, warns about having a narrow definition of success for our students and also advises parents to foster resilience and grit among our students.  There are practical tips for parents to be supportive rather than controlling to help students in their academic, career, and life journeys.

Tough, Paul, How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character.  Boston: Houghlin Mifflin, 2012.

While the population covered in this study focuses on K-12, the concepts of grit and character are universals for students of any age.  

Turkle, Sherry, Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age.  New York: Penguin Press, 2015

An MIT professor's analysis of digital technologies and the link of these media to the declension in civility and interpersonal interactions within families and throughout society.  The book includes useful tips for parents and families on rationing digital technology use and encouraging dialogue and true, in-person conversations.

Zakaria, Fareed, In Defense of a Liberal Education.  New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2015.

Using case studies, his own experiences, and data, Zakaria, a CNN commentator, analyzes what is at the heart of a college education.  This book raises important issues to discuss with our students as well as food for thought on why individuals go to college in the first place.