About the Author

Cornelius N. Grove completed an M.A.T. degree at Johns Hopkins University in 1964, then served for four years as a high school teacher in White Plains, NY. From there he moved into educational publishing at two houses in New York City. During 1971-73, he and his English wife sojourned for a year in rural Portugal and traveled in Europe and across Africa. He returned to graduate school at Columbia University.

While completing his Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree, Cornelius became fascinated with the cultural factors that affect children’s ability to learn in classrooms. For his doctoral project, he examined the cultural challenges affecting immigrant Portuguese students in a middle school. After graduating, he became Director of Research for AFS, the international student and teacher exchange organization. He also held adjunct teaching posts at New School University and Columbia’s Teachers College. At both institutions, he created and taught courses entitled “Cross-Cultural Classroom Communication.” During spring 1986, he taught at Beijing Foreign Studies University.

Beginning in 1990, Cornelius served as managing partner of GROVEWELL LLC, which delivered executive coaching and cross-cultural services for corporations worldwide. This consultancy closed in December 2020. Its services are now offered by Willa Hallowell Coaching.

Cornelius Grove’s first publication in his field of specialization was Communication Across Cultures (1976), in which he overviewed the relevance of cross-cultural research for teachers. In a 1978 magazine article, he contrasted the classroom cultures of Portugal and the United States. In a 1984 professional journal, he revealed how Chinese exchange teachers evaluated American schooling. And in 1991, he co-authored Encountering the Chinese, a practical introduction to Chinese values and behavior, now in its Third Edition (2010).

In 2003, Cornelius wrote a short article on how people in different cultures learn. In 2006 at an international conference in Singapore, he delivered a major paper on instructional styles across cultures. Soon after, he decided upon a long-term mission for himself: to explain to Americans the historical and cultural reasons for their children’s mediocre academic performance in comparison with children in other nations. With three books now published by Rowman & Littlefield, his mission is accomplished:

2013 The Aptitude Myth
How an Ancient Belief Came to Undermine Children’s Learning Today
2017 The Drive to Learn
What the East Asian Experience Tells Us about Raising Students Who Excel
2020 A Mirror for Americans
What the East Asian Experience Tells Us about Teaching Students Who Excel

In addition, Cornelius authored an entry on “Culturally Responsive Pedagogy” and nine other entries for the Encyclopedia of Intercultural Competence (2015). And for the International Encyclopedia of Intercultural Communication (2018), he authored lengthy entries on “Pedagogy Across Cultures” and “Cognitive Styles Across Cultures.”

Currently, Cornelius is writing a new book, tentatively entitled How Other Children Learn: Parenting and Learning in Five Pre-Modern Societies.

Cornelius is married to Christine Martin, an Englishwoman who has retired. They are proud of their three children, all of whom hold senior leadership roles in major American and global businesses, and of their five grandchildren. He and his wife walk a great deal; they haven’t owned an automobile in nearly 50 years!

On his consultancy’s website you will find Cornelius Grove’s full professional biography

Prior Publications