The role of trait emotional intelligence in achievement during a stressful educational transition: a multistage model of mediation via social support, coping and adaptation

Perera, Harsha N. (2014) The role of trait emotional intelligence in achievement during a stressful educational transition: a multistage model of mediation via social support, coping and adaptation. In: 40th British Educational Research Association Annual Conference (BERA 2014), 23-25 Sep 2014, London, United Kingdom.

Abstract

Recent years have witnessed considerable interest in the role of trait emotional intelligence (trait EI) in achievement and adaptation during stressful educational events. Higher trait EI has been linked to better achievement and less distress across educational stressors, such as academic examinations and the collegiate transition. However, the pathways by which trait EI is associated with adaptation and achievement during stressful educational events have received only little systematic investigation. As such, understanding of the mechanisms underlying the associations of trait EI with adaptation and achievement is limited.
The present research was designed to address these gaps in the psychoeducational literature. Specifically, the author proposes a theoretical model linking trait EI, social support, coping, adaptation, and first-semester achievement during the stressful college transition. The model was tested in a multi-wave study with a sample of incoming college undergraduates (N = 458) attending a metropolitan university in Australia. Structural equations analyses showed that the parametric structure implied by the model was largely consistent with the sample data. In particular, trait EI was found to be a direct, prospective predictor of higher perceived social support, the greater use of engagement coping strategies and better psychosocial adaptation to the college transition. In addition, tests of mediation revealed that the relations of trait EI with academic and psychosocial adaptation were mediated by engagement coping and social support, respectively. Trait EI was also found to be indirectly associated with first-semester achievement via engagement coping and academic adaptation linked serially in a temporal chain of unfolding events. Notably, the majority of these relations were robust when controlling for known confounding influences. The empirically supported mediating processes extend the extant literature by elucidating the psychosocial pathways through which distal affective traits promote better adaptation and achievement during stressful educational events. Limitations of this study, future directions and implications for teaching and learning, college counselling and student services operations will be discussed.


Statistics for USQ ePrint 26057
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © BERA 2014. No paper available from presentation.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Linguistics, Adult and Specialist Education
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2014 04:43
Last Modified: 13 Jul 2017 03:15
Uncontrolled Keywords: trait emotional intelligence; mediation; adjustment; college; university; structural equation modeling
Fields of Research : 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170103 Educational Psychology
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170109 Personality, Abilities and Assessment
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130305 Educational Counselling
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930101 Learner and Learning Achievement
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/26057

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only