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EFFECTS OF EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE SKILLS TRAINING ON ACADEMIC SELF EFFICACY AMONG SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN TARABA STATE, NIGERIA
1.1 Background to the Study
Education, no doubt, remains the most outstanding development priority area in the world today. The core purpose of education, unquestionably, is human development. Other things being equal, an educated person who is well or relevantly positioned in the socio-economic, cultural and political milieu is expected to be a valuable asset to the society than another individual who is illiterate and perhaps ignorant. This simple fact explains why researchers and scholars, all over the world, continue to do research into ways of improving human knowledge and development. Debates on education and human development more generally can hardly be a boring exercise. The socio-political, economic and technological developments, which bring about a high frequency of innovations and reforms, have all combined to make discussions or debates on education and human development trendy, exciting and unending (Ogundokun & Adeyemo, 2010). This may partly influences learning and achievement in schools.
However, achievement can be said to be the outcome of instruction. Ogundokun and Adeyemo (2010) also stated that achievement is the end product of a learning experience. Attaining a high level of academic Achievement is what every parent or guardian as well as teacher wishes for their children, wards and students. Schools and teachers are generally graded qualitatively by achievement based on the performance of their students. In Nigeria, education is considered the most important instrument for change and national development. However, of all the problems facing Nigeria‟s education system, none is more agonizing and persistent as the poor academic performance of students, especially of secondary schools, at the external examinations conducted by the West African Examination Council (WAEC) and
National Examination Council (NECO). And this has resulted in frustration, high drop-out rates and inability of students to gain admission into tertiary institutions. In spite of numerous efforts made by researchers, educators and policy makers to tackle this problem, academic performance of students is still a task that needs tobe improved, but students may also take emotional intelligence training to excel in school.
Literature suggest that emotional intelligence plays a key role in determining success in life and it becomes more and more important as people progress up the career ladder and academic success. (kolb & Hanley-Maxwell, 2003; Richburg & Fletcher, 2002). Goleman (1995) argues that emotional intelligence, social intelligence and luck also play a big role in a person‟s success. While IQ gets hired, emotional, EQ gets you promoted. Research has shown that, what separates successful people from less successful counterparts is not necessarily IQ but rather EQ, with key skills to success more likely to found in the latter rather than the former. For instance, Snary and Vaillant, (1985) underline the limitation of IQ in prediction one‟s success at work and life in general over forty years longitudinal investigation with 450 boys in Massachusetts, USA. They found that the strongest predictors of success were characteristics such as being able to handle frustration, control emotions and get along with other people. There results show that paying constant attention to the course of own moods and emotions is not always productive for the individual. This is particularly so when attention to feelings is not followed by sufficient capacity to understand their causes, motives, and consequences, or to repair them (Salguero, palomera, & Fernandez-Berrocol, 2011). Individual who attend to their emotions excessively without adequate clarity of the emotional state could develop an emotional spiral that would generate a ruminative and self-focused process that may rather than relieve their negative mood that result to low academic self-efficacy and provoke academic difficulties or failure. The role of self-efficacy in the cognitive functioning of students becomes even more important in an information rich world
where individual needs to become empowered for lifelong learning. Claims for the primacy of self-efficacy have been supported by a host of research. In particular, meta-analyses of research on self-efficacy serve to underline its influence. Meta-analyses use statistical measures and strict criteria of validity and reliability to synthesise a number of studies into one overall set of findings, and are therefore an excellent gauge of the state of knowledge in a field at a given time. In 1991, a meta-analysis of 39 studies between 1977 and 1988 found that higher self-efficacy can lead to higher academic performance and persistence (Multon, Brown, & Lent, 1991).
Goleman (1995) outlines four main emotional intelligence constructs. That is: self-awareness is the ability to read one's emotions and recognize their impact while using gut feelings to guide decisions; Self-management which involves controlling one's emotions and impulses and adapting to changing circumstances; social awareness which includes the ability to sense, understand, and react to other's emotions while comprehending social networks; and relationship management which entails the ability to inspire, influence, and develop others while managing conflict.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Presently, information technology has made the world a global village where traditional or conventional ways of living are in transitional phase. Due to urbanization and liberalization, adolescents are in a dilemma where they find themselves unfit and unfilled. Rapid changes in family life, pressures of peers and society, present day life style and academic challenges among others are the factors that lead to increase in competition, stress and anxiety among secondary school students. Generally secondary school students are thus not able to cope with the humiliation and negative emotions in their academic lives. When an
individual is in the wave of positive or negative emotions, his behaviour is totally controlled and directed by that emotion. Engaging Secondary School Students emotionally is the key to strengthening their dispositions toward critical thinking which in turn leads to a rational and reasonable emotional life, the link between thinking and emotions is essential in academic achievement.
Substantial amount of research has established the connection of self-efficacy to academic achievement and the research consistently demonstrated that academic self-efficacy enhances secondary school students‟ performance and academic success. Psychological and affective state sometimes produces profound feelings of disappointment, frustration and self-worthlessness. Which in fact reinforce emotional problems that provoke low academic self-efficacy which leads to academic difficulty and academic failure;since it has to do with emotions, emotional intelligence skills training might minimize such negative feelings and bust the academic self-efficacy of secondary school students, which eventually pave a way to academic success.Therefore, the problem of this research was to investigate the effects of Emotional Intelligence skills Training on Academic Self-Efficacy among secondary school students in Taraba State, Nigeria.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The objectives of the study are to:
- Find out the differences between post-test scores on Academic Self Efficacy of Secondary School Students exposed to Emotional Intelligence skills training and those in control group.
- Find out the differences between pre-test and post-testscoreson Academic Self Efficacy of Secondary School Students exposed to Emotional Intelligenceskills training.
- Determine the differences in Academic Self Efficacy scores of male and female students exposed treatment.
1.4 Research Questions
The following research questions guided the study:
- What are the differences between post-test mean scores on Academic Self Efficacy of secondary school students exposed to Emotional Intelligence skills training and those in control group
- What are the differences between pre-test and post-test scores on Academic Self Efficacy of secondary school students exposed to Emotional Intelligence skillstraining?
- What are the differences in Academic Self Efficacy scores of male and female students exposed to treatment?
The following null hypotheses guided the study:
- There is no significant difference in thepost-test scores on Academic Self Efficacy of secondary school students exposed to Emotional Intelligence skills training and those in control group.
- There is no significant difference between pre-test and post-test scores on Academic Self Efficacy of secondary school students exposed to Emotional Intelligence skills training.
- There is no significant difference in Academic Self Efficacy scores of male and female students exposed treatment.
1.6 Basic Assumptions
For the purpose of this study the following assumptions were made:
- Training in emotional intelligence skills (self-awareness, self-management, social-awareness and Relationship management)can improve academic self-efficacy of secondary school students.
- Training in emotional intelligence skills may increase academic self-efficacy among male and female students in the treatment group.
1.7 Significance of the Study
The findings of this study will add to theory building on emotional intelligence and academic self-efficacy. The findings will further provide an insight into the feelings of the people. It is also essential tools for self-insight and self-control (the ability to recognise and regulate ones‟ moods).It helps the students with the ability to cope with stress, depression and aggressive behaviours. The findings will also help the society in determining outcome of the individuals to adjust and adapt to environmental circumstances that disturbed them. The findings will help educators and curriculum planners, on the new skills such as emotional self- awareness, self- management, and social-awareness and relationship management when fully utilised and inculcated into the curriculum in order to ascertain the objective of nation educational systems.
Furthermore, the findings of this study through its emotional intelligence skills will aid school achievement in term of better handling of mutual relationship and perceived feelings both in one-self and others.Finally, the findings of this study will serve as a missing link for future researchers on emotional intelligence and academic self-efficacy of the students.
1.8 Scope and Delimitation of the Study
The scope of this study was to examine the effects of Emotional Intelligence skills Training on Academic Self Efficacy covering Secondary School Students in Taraba State, Nigeria. There are eight(8) educational zones in Taraba state, namely: Bali, Donga,Gembu, Jalingo, Karim, Takum, Wukari and Zing. The study was delimited to four Emotional Intelligence skills namely: Emotional self-awareness, Self-Management, Social awarenessand RelationshipManagement, This study was also delimited to only one (1) educational zone i.e. Jalingo education zone,was used for this study. The study is limited to Secondary School Students (SS II) only. These are considered as the most important emotional intelligence skills that Secondary School Students would need to learn in order to enhance theirAcademic Self Efficacy.