The it was integrated into various teaching

 

 

The role that emotional intelligence plays in facilitating academic achievement

Kevin
Tang

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18463024

Western
Sydney University

 

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to draw links between
emotional intelligence its role in academic success. This study seeks to answer
the research question; does emotional intelligence play a role in facilitating
academic achievement? The goal is to explore theories across various literature
and determine whether or not emotional intelligence is the facilitator or not
and to also identify other factors that do affect academic achievement if
emotional intelligence is not the sole determinant.

The role that emotional intelligence plays in facilitating academic achievement

In order to improve overall academic achievement, many
studies and assessments have taken place to determine if emotional intelligence
may be a facilitating factor in doing so. Although the literature does present
a wide variety of theories, this review aims to define emotional intelligence, how
emotional intelligence is measured, coping mechanisms it provides for all
academics across all backgrounds and how it was integrated into various
teaching curriculum in an attempt to measure its effects on academic
achievement.

Emotional intelligence (EI) can be described by the
quality that allows us to manage interpersonal relationships with patience,
insight and creativeness. To measure emotional intelligence, Mayer’s
hierarchical model was consulted. Mayer, Caruso & Salovey’s (2000) studies
states that within EI there exists four branches; emotional perception,
emotional facilitation of thought, emotional understand and emotional
management. Mayer et al utilized two methods to assess EI. The first is the
Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence test which assesses maximum
performance levels of individuals and measures ability EI and the second test
relies on Likert type ratings to measure trait EI.

It was quickly discovered that using both of these
methods together to measure EI would lead to validity issues in research which
lead to MacCann, Fogarty, Zeidner & Roberts (2011) preferred to use rating
scales as they measure the self-perception of one’s emotional skills rather
than the skills themselves. Salovey, Bedell, Detweiller, & Mayer (2000) theorised
that individuals with high EI would have an easier time coping with stress as
they are able to better perceive, understand and manage their own along with
other people’s emotions. Not every student will have a positive experience in
an educational institution, the ones with higher EI and coping mechanisms would
be able to recover quicker than the ones that do not. Jaegar and Eagan (2007)
conducted a study on 3500 students at a public university and determined that
students who could cope in high pressure environments had an advantage on those
who could not as they were better equipped to control their anxiety during
exams, prioritize tasks and move pass personal crises. Their study further
strengthens the point that individuals with higher EI would tend to adapt to
various situations which may lead to positive academic achievement.

Further study claim that students’ emotional ability
can play a huge factor in social interaction. Positive expression of emotional
tend to be well received and garner adaptive feedback and responses from others
whereas the negative emotions will receive the opposite Argyle and Lu (1990).
This means that higher levels of EI can help predict the academic grades via
the ability to cope with assessments and evaluations. Fernandes and Rego (2004)
found that EI plays a huge role in determining a student’s satisfaction, health
and academic achievement. Higher levels of EI facility a student’s ability to
transition from high school to university and then eventually from university
to the workforce.

A person’s IQ can be used as a determining factor and
associated with academic achievement according to Mohzan, Hassan, & Halil
(2013). They also reveal a variety of factors including social economic status,
motivation, peer-relationships, teacher-student relationships and personality
should also be taken into account as they can affect a person’s IQ. Not only
does emotional help individuals cope in stressful environments but it also
contributes to being a team player and improve organisational skills. Goleman
(1995) states that IQ merely contributes to 20% of an individual’s success.
This hints that although it is a good starting indicator there are more factors
such as the ones mentioned above that play a role in facilitating academic
achievement.   

Nasir and Masur (2010) point out that a student’s
effective learning only occurs when they have developed an understanding of how
to learn which requires self-confidence, self-control and the ability to interact
with their peers. Their study also deduced that EI can also assist in
predicting academic achievement among the 132 students who participated in the
assessment at the International Islamic University. Another investigation
performed by Rozell, Pettijohn, & Parker (2002) determined that a strong
link existed between EI and academic achievement amongst the students at Mid-Western
University in America. Students with a higher EI tended to have a higher GPA
compared to those that had a low EI. These two studies mentioned above suggest
that having a high EI may lead to better academic achievement regardless of
culture or country of origin.

Joyner and Mann (2011) conducted a study which aimed
to developing EI skills for MBA students. Their goal was to determine if
changing to a specific program would lead to positive changes in students’ EI.
This program implemented EI related content across all curriculums of the three
year course. This study revealed major enhancements in the emotional and social
functioning of its participants. These results suggest that if EI was to be
taught alongside an institute’s curriculum, it can expect its students to
improve academically.

On the other side of the spectrum, O’Connor Jr. and
Little’s (2003) investigation revealed that EI is not a strong indicator of
academic achievement. Their studied was performed on 138 college students. Each
student was subject to an emotional intelligence scale test based on both
self-report and skill. The study determined that regardless of the scale used
to measure the students’ EI, women tend to score higher than their male
counterparts however there was no significant difference in their GPA.  Domitrovich, Cortes, and Greenberg
(2007) adopted the Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies curriculum
(PATHS) where they encourage teachers to apply the PATHS lessons within their
classrooms over the span of 9 months. Their goal was to improve their students’
ability in concentration, inhibitory control, problem solving and emotional
awareness. To assess the before and after results, home visits, questionnaires
and family demographics were recorded. The final results concluded that there
was a definite improvement in emotional awareness and the students were less
likely to misidentify facial expressions compared to the control group that did
not receive the PATHS curriculum. However the other three areas; concentration,
inhibitory control and problem solving showed no significant changes.

From this literature review, it can be seen that there
are studies that both support and deny that EI facilitates academic achievement
however it can be agreed upon that possessing a high EI is advantageous but it
is not the sole determining variable in facilitating academic achievement.
Other factors such as social economic status, motivation, peer relationships
must be taken into account. However we can reaffirm that EI does assist in
coping in stressful situations such as exams and assignment deadlines which are
a few of the many ways academic institutes choose to measure their students’
academic success.

References

Argyle
and Lu, 1990 M. Argyle, L. Lu, Happiness and social skills Personality and
Individual Differences, 11 (1990), pp. 1255-1261

Connor,
R. M. O., & Little, I. S. (2003). Revisiting the predictive validity of
emotional intelligence: Self-report versus ability-based measures. Personality
and Individual Differences, 35(8), 1893-1902. Retrieved from https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.uws.edu.au/docview/57172616?accountid=36155

Domitrovich, C. E., Cortes, R. C., & Greenberg, ?. T.,
(2007). Improving young children’s social and emotional competence: A
randomized trial of the preschool “PATTIS” Curriculum. The Journal of
Primary Prevention, 28,273-289.

Goleman,
Daniel, Emotional Intelligence: Why it Can Matter More Than IQ.
Bloomsbury Publishing PLC, 1996.

Jaeger,
A. J., Bresciani, M. J., & Ward, C. S. (2003).Predicting persistence and
academic performance of first year students.An assessment of emotional
intelligence and non-cognitive variables.M.A. North Carolina State University.
Retrieved January 15 2018, from http://www.ncsu.edu/assessment/resources/news/nov03.pdf

Joyner, F. F., , D. T.Y (2011).Developing emotional
intelligence in MBA students: A case study of one program’s success. American
Journal of Business Education, 4(10), 59-72.

Maccann, Fogarty, Zeidner, & Roberts. (2011). Coping mediates the
relationship between emotional intelligence (EI) and academic
achievement. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 36(1),
60-70.

Mayer, J.
D., Caruso, D. R., & Salovey, P. (2000). Selecting a measure of emotional
intelligence: The case for ability scales. In R. Bar-On & J. D. A. Parker
(Eds.), The handbook of emotional intelligence: Theory, development,
assessment, and application at home, school, and in the workplace (pp.
320-342). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Mohzan, Hassan, & Halil. (2013). The Influence of Emotional
Intelligence on Academic Achievement. Procedia – Social and Behavioral
Sciences, 90, 303-312.

Nasir,
M. & Masrur, R. (2010). An Exploration of Emotional Intelligence of the
Students of IIUI in Relation to Gender, Age and Academic Achievement. Bulletin
of Education and Research. 32, (1), 37-51.

Rozell,
E.J., Pettijohn, C.E., & Parker, R.S. (2002). An empirical evaluation of
emotional intelligence: The impact on management development. Journal of
Management Development, 21, 272-289.

Zeidner, Matthews, Roberts,
Emotional intelligence, adaptation, and
coping
J. Ciarrochi, J. Forgas, J.D. Mayer (Eds.), Emotional
intelligence in everyday life: A scientific inquiry (2nd
ed.), Psychology Press, Philadelphia, PA (2006),
pp. 100-125

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