How do high-achieving students, productive employees, or top-notch athletes achieve success?


It is often not just a person’s ability that makes the difference between success and failure. But it is also their beliefs and behaviors that make them effective. How can we identify these adaptive beliefs and behaviors, and how can we harness this knowledge to help people succeed at their goals?


Our research aims to address questions like these at the heart of human motivation by:

(1) identifying the beliefs and behaviors that foster high performance and well-being,

(2) leveraging multiple methods (laboratory, survey, and field research) to empirically establish the processes through which they work, and 

(3) designing scalable, psychologically precise interventions to promote the adoption of these beliefs and behaviors.

 Recent Features 

NUS news

Question: When doing a task, how often have you thought: "How else can I do this?" or "Is there a better way of doing this?" People who often engage in such thoughts may have high levels of what is termed a "strategic mindset"

Successful individuals tend to be more strategic and thus, more effective than others at meeting challenges. A recent publication by Dr. Patricia Chen in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) demonstrated the importance of a "strategic mindset" in driving such success.

Read all about what she found here:

"These findings are exciting because psychological science has long known that having a wide repertoire of strategies matters. But until now, we hadn’t understood why some people use their strategies more than others at the right time. We developed our research on the strategic mindset to explain why this might be"

- Dr Patricia Chen

BBC Worklife

"The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle.”

                                                                                                                            - Steve Jobs


“If you really want to fly, harness your power to your passion. Honour your calling. Everybody has one.” 

                                                                                                                            - Oprah Winfrey


These are some of the famous quotes of our generation's most successful entrepreneurs speaking about chasing one's passion. But, for those of us who have yet to find our passion, what can we do to achieve this passionate experience? What if we never find our passion? Can we develop passion towards our work?

Read the article by BBC Worklife featuring Dr. Patricia Chen and Dr. Paul O'Keefe from Yale-NUS to find out more!


BBC Worklife, Mar 2020.

How A 'Growth Mindset' Can Lead To Success

Have you ever set a New Year's resolution and forgot about it soon after?
Ever wanted to know how you could have greater success in sticking to your New Year's resolutions?


Well, you've come to the right place! 

Here is a video Dr. Patricia Chen made with Mothership.SG to teach you some tips on how to get more out of your New Year's resolutions!