A short piece I’ve had students read as part of a lesson on the importance of setting goals is about a supposed Harvard study that describes how much more successful people are who write down their goals as opposed to those who only think about them. Even though that lesson is cited countless times if you search the Web, I just discovered that it’s fake.

However, there is another study — one that was actually done recently — that did arrive at similar conclusions. It was done by Gail Matthews, a clinical psychologist at Dominican University in California. So I’ll be using this summary of that study in the place of the fake one.

The Russian proverb, “Trust, but verify” (which really is a Russian proverb) apparently holds true for Internet research as well as nuclear weapon limitation talks.