All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Loucrecia Collins

Advisory Committee Members

David Schwebel

Lourdes Sanchez-Lopez

David Vance

Document Type

Dissertation

Date of Award

2015

Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) School of Education

Abstract

EXPLORING THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN STUDY ABROAD AND EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE MICHAEL JOSHUA CARTER EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP ABSTRACT Given the increased interest in the academic and behavioral impact of university study abroad programs, the possible relationship between study abroad and emotional intelligence was evaluated. A paper-based survey packet consisting of a researcher-developed demographic questionnaire and the Bar-On EQ-i: 2.0 Emotional Intelligence Quotient Inventory (EQi) was administered to a convenience sample of 144 undergraduate students, ages 19-25, at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The total sample consisted of two groups: (1) a sample group of undergraduate students who participated in the university study abroad program and (2) a sample group of undergraduate students who did not participate in the university study abroad program. The hypotheses tested were: (1) Study abroad participants will score higher on the Bar-On EQ-i: 2.0 Emotional Intelligence Quotient Inventory (EQi) than those students who do not study abroad, (2) Study abroad participation can be predicted by EQ as measured by EQi scores, and (3) Study abroad participants will score higher on the EQi administered after the study abroad experience as compared to their EQi baseline scores collected prior to participating in the study abroad program. Data analysis failed to affirm these hypotheses. No significant difference between study abroad and non-study abroad participant EQi scores was observed. No significant difference in pre- and post-study abroad EQi scores was observed. Though this study did not identify total EQi scores as a possible means of identifying students who would be more likely to study abroad, student socioeconomic status was found to be a significant predictor of study abroad participation. Additionally, EQi total score approached significance as a predictor of study abroad participation, and exploratory analyses identified EQi subscale scores related to emotional self-awareness and flexibility as statistically significant predictive indicators of student likelihood to study abroad. Implications of findings for educational leaders are discussed along with suggestions for future research in the field of study abroad.

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