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What is emotional intelligence? Emotional Intelligence refers to "an ability to recognise the meaning of emotions and their relationships; and to reason and problem-solve on the basis of them" (Mayer, Caruso and Solovey (1999) quoted in Vialle, Lysaght & Verenikina 2005:202).
Before embarking on the rationalisation of emotional intelligence and how this relates to the teaching and learning process it is essential to consider the meaning of the term 'intelligence'. According to the American Psychological Association (n.d online), "Intelligence can be defined as a coherent, capacity to inherently acquire and apply knowledge towards a specific purpose". This definition of intelligence connects to a person's ability to employ their cognitive abilities to retain information dispensing when required; considering this where does emotional intelligence come into the equation of learning. Deliberating the learning and teaching process let's consider the association between the two, teachers have a responsibility to be a conductor and motivate learners to engage in the learning process; as learners are expected to be an active participant and possess the willingness to receive knowledge. Considering this it is acknowledged that teachers need to judge if the learner is ready to absorb information transmitted in teaching. As stated by Roy Killen (2009), "teachers cannot simply implement the elements of quality teaching without considering a number of important factors that could prevent learners engaging".
One factor would be a learner's emotional intelligence; our emotional intelligence debates and regulates our emotions, assisting learners to focus and motivating them in ascertaining knowledge. When a learners emotional intelligence is impeded this creates barriers as soon as entering the teaching environment, written by Roy Killen (2009), " learners enter the classroom with feelings and emotions resulting in how they see themselves and how they think others see them". If a learner views themselves as capable then they are more likely to succeed than a student whom doubts their abilities; as a general analysis when a person develops confidence they are more likely to initiate the learning process. Students who have positive experiences during the learning process generate positive emotions leading to the retaining of information effectively, hence feeling pride to continue learning. "Our emotional reactions and the emotional reactions of others (emotional reactions) influence how we feel, what to expect, what we do, and how we behave (subsequent behaviour)". (Tuckman B. W. & Monetti D. M., lecture 7 August 2010)
Considering the above statement when a student has a negative experience in the classroom, for example, inability to succeed at a task; this could leave the student feeling they are unable to complete this task in future attempts. Leading to expectation they will therefore fail, surfacing the behaviour of not attempting or avoiding the task.
There are numerous emotional reactions to situations and different levels we experience these emotions, connecting this to emotional intelligence, by way of definition, Goleman (1995:203) divided emotional intelligence into a number of components; one of which being the "ability to motivate oneself."
Students require different methods to be individually successful, one of which is motivation, Groundwater-Smith, Ewing and Le Cornu (2003:68) state learners need to be responded to in different ways by their class teacher if they are to continue to be interested in learning and involved in the process.
During the teaching and learning process the first steps for the teacher would be to identify the purpose and outcomes of the lesson. Once the outcomes for a student are indentified the teacher commences assisting the student towards the possibility of the learner identifying their self-motivation, "What's in it for me", progressing to the consumption of information assisting learners to reach their outcomes. Teachers are important to students to becoming self-regulated learners.
Roy Killen advises, "The importance of motivation goes beyond the immediacy of academic performance. One of the critical roles of schools is to encourage students to become independent lifelong learners". EFFECTIVE TEACHING STRATEGIES Motivation - self regulated learning pg 176.
For a teacher to be effective in their duties they need to be; adapting to their students as they need to be identified as a whole being through all aspects; Learning is not only based on cognitive and brain development but emotional development. Development includes a series of progressive and orderly changes leading to maturity; emotional intelligence is a product of our maturity, Howard Gardner (1993,1995) he argues that people have different cognitive strengths, he writes: "Although all humans exhibit the range of intelligences, individuals differ presumably for both hereditary and environmental reasons - in their current profile of intelligences". UNDERSTANDING LEARNER DIVERSITY Different learning styles pg 68.
This is significant in a learner's development, allowing them to regulate their emotions focusing on outcomes, connecting the 'What's in it for me', going from a nurtured learning environment to a self-regulated learning environment.
In conclusion emotional intelligence assist learners to be productive and successful in absorbing and retaining information, when a learner is productive in their studies they are more likely to be open to the teaching and learning process, this in turn means the student has a deeper understanding and allows a teacher to provide quality teaching.
REFERENCE SHEET DRAFT
American Psychological Association (APA):intelligence. (n.d.). The American HeritageÂ® Stedman's Medical Dictionary. Retrieved July 29, 2010, from Dictionary.com website:http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/intelligence
Reference Module 1 slide, Source: Tuckman, B. W., & Monetti, D. M. (2011). Educational psychology. Belmont, CA:
Wadsworth, Cengage Learning."
(Mayer, Caruso and Solovey (1999) quoted in Vialle, Lysaght & Verenikina 2005:202). PSYCHOLOGY FOR EDUCATORS emotional intelligence pg202 (intext reference)
"Our emotional reactions and the emotional reactions of others (emotional reactions) influence how we feel, what to expect, what we do, and how we behave (subsequent behaviour)". (Tuckman B. W. & Monetti D. M., lecture 7 August 2010)
Goleman (1995:203) divided emotional intelligence into a number of components; one of which being the "ability to motivate oneself." PSYCHOLOGY FOR EDUCATIONS EQ: The populised view pg203
Groundwater-Smith, Ewing and Le Cornu (2003:68) state learners need to be responded to in different ways by their class teacher if they are to continue to be interested in learning and involved in the process. UNDERSTANDING LEARNER DIVERSITY Different learning styles pg 68.