Philosophy underlying emotional intelligence in relation to level of curiosity and academic achievement of rural area students.

Author:Hassan, Aminuddin


The national philosophy of education (1987) outlined a number of key factors that need to be implemented in the education field in order to produce individuals that are intellectually, spiritually, emotionally and physically balanced. Emotional intelligence is deemed as one of the important aspects in educating a person to be balanced as a whole. Through emotional intelligence, one will become more successful in life as compared to individuals that gain solely high levels of intellectual intelligence (IQ) (17). Emotional intelligence also provides liberty for individuals to explore self potentials, as well as providing opportunities for individuals to harmonize themselves with their self emotion. In other words, individuals with high levels of emotional intelligence are those that are able to manage their emotions well (25).

The awareness towards the importance of the role of emotional intelligence sparked numerous studies which are interconnected with human emotions in various perspectives of life. Every effort in accommodating towards an adjustment will create several problems. The way to solve problems is mainly based on the experience which is already gained by individuals through the process of interaction with their surroundings. In the process of development in today's modern era, individuals will then encounter several situations, which later on will result with them creating various problems. The problems of adjustment occur because of the existence of conflict towards humans themselves, in order to fulfill the need of their surroundings.

Hurlock (20) suggests that the problem of emotion also needs to be looked from the aspect of its impact towards the individual, society, as well as the state. Highly emotional disturbances are not only influencing the behavior, but also attitude, psychological conditions, as well as their abilities. The authority should be given to the teenagers as youth age is known as a phase of 'storm and stress'; where emotional disturbances frequently occur, accompanied by rapid physical growth and the varied levels of psychological growth. The difficulty at teenage phase especially at the stage of puberty (11 years old to 16 years old) may cause teenagers to face difficulties in coping with the next stages of growth (20).

The term 'emotional intelligence' was coined by Peter Salovey from University of Yale and John Mayer from University of New Hampshire in 1990. According to Salovey and Mayer (29), emotional intelligence is the ability to manage individual self and other people from the aspect of feeling and emotion, able to distinguish the two terms apart and able to use the information to guide one's thinking and act. Emotional intelligence also depicts an amount of competence which relates with the ability to control emotion in order to motivate, to feature and to gain purpose in life (2).

According to Goleman (17), emotional intelligence is an ability to understand the self emotion and applies the talent to make effective decisions in life. With emotional intelligence, an individual is able to contain disappointments, sadness and other negative feelings in a positive manner. Emotional intelligence also enables an individual to control self-impetus. Furthermore, according to Goleman, the level of IQ contributes only about 20% towards one's accomplishment, while the rest are determined by emotional intelligence (17). Emotional intelligence is also deemed as a group of several factors of one's social and cognitive aspects and the connection within the description of emotion (30).

Anxiety on the contrary, is defined as the strength of the feeling of disturbances, subjectivity, uncertainty, nervousness endured by individuals in one time and the increase of automatic neuron activity, as a result of this feeling. The condition of anxiety is different from its strength and the duration is based on the strain that has been endured by the individual according to self interpretation whether the situation is hazardous and threatening to the self or not. Anxiety is part and parcel of life and one of the psychological conditions of uncertainty which happens frequently. It also refers to the obscure feeling and uncomfortable state of fearing that something terrible would happen (21). Concisely, anxiety is pictured as self perception, which is connected with uncertainty towards the ability to overcome the needs of a situation (18).

Statement of the problem: In entirety, our national education system is based on academic intelligence and highly logically and analytically technical aspects. The curriculum field is adorned based on the need of grammar, mathematic, sanity, orientation of formula and group of fact and cart. However, the premise is not entirely practical ever since the last decade. There are facts that show that not all individuals with highly academic achievements gain successful accomplishments in their careers and personal lives. Mayer and Salovey (23) found out that those with high levels of cognitive intelligence (IQ) are not assured of excelling in their careers. Moreover, some of them which are successful in career and personal life are actually those with middle achievement and it is not uncommon for some thriving with only basic education.

The factor of emotional intelligence is looked as one of the factors that influence students' learning process. Evidently, emotional intelligence contributes significant an implication towards their academic achievements (5), (28). In general context, excellence in academic achievement has been commonly connected with students' high cognitive intelligence, while the aspect of emotion has not been given its deserving emphasis. Thus, the study of emotional intelligence needs to be widened to open up the minds of parents, teachers and the authority that are directly and indirectly involved in the process of development and learning of the students. The objective should focus on the importance of emotional intelligence towards the inner soundness and successes of their children.

In some cases, the factor of emotional intelligence is also interconnected with the aspect of one's anxiety. Studies have found out that high levels of emotional intelligence is able to decrease the level of anxiety of an individual (8), (10), (14). Aspects of anxiety on the other hand, are closely connected with expansion, attention, motivation and a large number of components in an individual's emotion (15). Unsurprisingly, lower levels of anxiety have been proven to be able to improve students' academic achievement (12), (37).

The condition of anxiety exists as a result of feeling of fear and the hate for risks. Anxiety could also become a possible impediment in the learning process (33). It has been proven to weaken the achievement of cognitive functions, including attention, memory, formations of concepts and problem-solving. Furthermore, there is a connection between anxiety and the aspect of difficulty in carrying out a task, where the anxiety constructs a weak achievement in complex task, but increase the level of achievement in easy task (34).

Objective of the study: The objective of the study in general is to look at the level of emotional intelligence and its relation with the level of anxiety, as well as academic achievement among the students in one of the rural area schools. Explicitly, the objectives of the study are as follow:

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