Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctorate of Education, Ed.D.


College of Education



First Advisor

Jillian Skelton, Ed.D.

Second Advisor

Quincy Daniels, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Dion Jones, Ed.D.


The purpose of this qualitative case study was to explore how pre-service teachers perceive instructor EI in a state college teacher education environment. An operational construct sampling of 12 pre-service teachers investigated the real-time experiences of pre-service teachers in a state college teacher preparation program specifically in exploring instructor EI and EI awareness of self and others. Instrumentation and data collection was accomplished by semi-structured interview, observation, and an online EI survey. Themes identified include: emotional connection through instructor support and empathy, emotional awareness through use of and facilitation of emotions, and emotional engagement through instructional attributes. Teaching practices observed that strongly support high academic engagement includes: safe, respectful classroom environment, empathetic listening and positive connections, stress validation, and meaningful, relevant work. Limitations to this study include the lack of generalizability of the study results, as this study was conducted at one unique state college location. The results of this study have the following implications for the practice of teaching and pre-service teacher education. In the workplace, understanding, negotiating, and monitoring the intense emotionality is a primary dimension of teachers’ work which places elevated stress on teachers’ EI. Emotional intelligence may be beneficial for teachers’ psychological well-being and may have a protective effect in reducing burnout. It is suggested that pre-service education programs incorporate emotional intelligence competency building to enhance teachers’ expertise and improve their ability to perceive and regulate the emotions of themselves and others.

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