Emotional intelligence development in 1st year allied health professional students

Mackay, Stuart, McNulty, J.P., Lewis, S., Lane, S. and White, P. (2014) Emotional intelligence development in 1st year allied health professional students. In: Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE), Excellence in Education - the 21st Century Teacher, 30 August - 3 September 2014, Milan, Italy.


Background : Mackay et al 2013 found that the trait Emotional Intelligence (EI) of allied health students at the start of their training programme was statistically significantly different from their qualified counterparts. The mean Global EI score for qualified practitioners was higher than the students suggesting changes in student EI might occur during university education. However, Petrides 2009 states that Trait EI scores are likely to remain relatively stable across the life-span. This study aims to demonstrate any change in EI during the first year of radiotherapy and diagnostic radiography degree programmes. Summary of Work: 502 1st year students from degree programmes at four universities (Hong Kong, Ireland, UK, Australia) were invited to complete an online Trait EI questionnaire on three occasions (beginning, middle and end) during year one of study. A Repeated Measures ANOVA (Greenhouse-Geisser methods) was undertaken across the three time points with correction for difference in age and gender along with an analysis of the 1st and 3rd time points using a paired Ttest. Summary of Results: 81 students completed all three questionnaires (n=16%) with males=21 (25.9%) and females=60 (74.1%). The ANOVA revealed no statistically significant differences across the three time points. 109 students had completed questionnaires for time points 1 and 3 (n=22%). The paired T-tests revealed no statistically significant differences. Discussion and Conclusions: No change in emotional intelligence was evident in this sample during the first year of the degree programmes. Take-home messages: Emotional intelligence might not be developed during the first year of practitioner training.

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