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EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGIST, 37(4), 215231 Copyright 2002, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.


Can Emotional Intelligence Be Schooled? A Critical Review

Moshe Zeidner
Center for Interdisciplinary Research of Emotions University of Haifa, Israel

Richard D. Roberts
Department of Psychology University of Sydney, Australia

Gerald Matthews
Department of Psychology University of Cincinnati

This article critically reviews the claimed role of emotional intelligence (EI) in the educational and school context. Our review shows that most intervention programs were not specifically designed to change EI, and very few systematic interventions meet the canons of internal and external validity. Consequently, little objective evidence attesting to the useful role of EI as a predictor of school success and adjustment exists beyond that predicted by intelligence and personality factors. Herein we discuss several crucial issues that need to be addressed prior to developing and implementing EI programs, and we provide specific guidelines for the development, implementation, and evaluation of future EI programs. Currently, the successful schooling of EI is still undetermined.

Emotional intelligence (EI) is a relatively new and growing area of investigation that has, virtually since its inception, generated controversy both in the scientific community and in the popular media. Concerned by a lack of consensus, researchers have recently directed increasingly extensive efforts toward resolving conceptual and measurement issues (e.g., Roberts, Zeidner, & Matthews, 2001; Zeidner, Matthews, & Roberts, 2001). Efforts also have been directed toward determining the developmental trajectory of EI and related concepts (e.g., Denham, 1998; Saarni, 1999) and whether, in fact, it can be modified (e.g., Salovey & Sluyter, 1997). Concurrent with this basic focus, commentators have focused both on developing and critiquing meaningful applications of EI (for a review see Matthews, Zeidner, & Roberts, in press). In the spirit of this research, this article reviews critically what we currently know (and do not know) about the cultivation and schooling of EI. We begin with a brief overview of

the EI concept and its assessment. We then discuss both distal (developmental) and proximal (schooling) factors purportedly shaping the development of EI. An examination of current trends in social and emotional learning programs follows. We conclude by proposing some general principles and guidelines for conducting school-based EI interventions and program evaluations. This article presents an attempt to move toward theory of EI in educational context by offering our provisional take of the best conceptualizations and data available on the schooling of EI.

DEFINITION Popular interest in EI has at times tended to obscure definitional clarity (Matthews et al., in press). The term is too often used in the most all-encompassing and protean of ways, thus leaving it bereft of conceptual meaning. For example, the populist, although widely influential account Goleman (1995) offered, appears to define EI by exclusion as being any desirable feature of personal character that is not cognitive intelligence. More recently, Goleman (2001) has suggested that the competencies associated with EI relate to four cardinal

Requests for reprints should be sent to Moshe Zeidner, Center for Interdisciplinary Research of Emotions, University of Haifa, Mt. Carmel, Israel 31905. E-mail:



domains, defined by two key domain facets: (a) abilityrecognition versus regulation of emotion, and (b) targetwhether competence relates to self versus others. The Cartesian product of the two facet categories (ability by target) yields the following four EI components: (a) recognition of emotions in self; (b) recognition of emotions in others; (c) regulation of emotions in self; and (d) regulation of emotions in others. However, although this analysis suggests some fields of inquiry, it does not identify a unifying common element among the components. Furthermore, it does not describe how to distinguish EI from other, distinct abilities and personality traits that may influence recognition and regulation of emotions. Therefore, what is meant exactly by the term EI, at least as Goleman and colleagues use it, is unclear. As in studies of conventional intelligence, progress in conceptualization operates in tandem with efforts at measurement of the construct. Consequently, researchers working in test development have offered more precise definitions. Perhaps the most widely accepted definition of EI is the ability to monitor ones own and others emotions, to discriminate among them, and to use the information to guide ones thinking and actions (Salovey & Mayer, 1990, p. 189). This definition differs from Golemans categorical scheme in identifying emotional information processing as a necessary precursor of emotional regulation. Difficulties in conceptualization lead to problems in differentiating EI from a multitude of other ability, personality, and motivation constructs that are already employed in educational psychology (Zeidner et al., 2001). EI lacks the comprehensive, multistratum models established for conventional mental abilities (Carroll, 1993). Indeed, EI measures overlap with well-established personality constructs, such as those of the Five Factor Model (see Davies, Stankov, & Roberts, 1998; McCrae, 2000). Mayer, Caruso, & Salovey (2000) warned that careful analysis is required to distinguish what is (and what is not) part of EI. Mayer et al. distinguish between (a) mental ability models, focusing on aptitude for processing affective information, and (b) mixed models that conceptualize EI as a diverse construct, including aspects of personality as well as the ability to perceive, assimilate, understand, and manage emotions. These mixed models include motivational factors and affective dispositions (e.g., self-concept, assertiveness, empathy; see Bar-On, 1997; Goleman, 1995). A related issue is the extent to which EI should be differentiated from social intelligence. Ford and Tisak (1983) identified the following three criteria as attributes of social intelligence: (a) decoding of social cues (e.g., ability to read nonverbal cues), (b) effectiveness of ones social performance (viewed in terms of behavioral outcomes), and (c) a social measure with a skill component. However, pinpointing what abilities or skills do (or do not) fall within the domain of social intelligence, or even whether an empirically coherent construct of social intelligence exists, has been relatively difficult (Keating, 1978). The measurement of the construct

proved to be an almost insurmountable task, and when measured, the results have failed to yield a conceptually coherent factor (see Kihlstrom & Cantor, 2000, for a review of attempts to conceptualize and measure this construct; see also Carroll, 1993). On the one hand, perhaps a narrower focus on emotional functioning might establish EI as a more robust construct than social intelligence. On the other hand, much of the interest in scales for EI resides in their capacity to predict pro-social behaviors such as altruism and providing emotional support to others, versus antisocial behaviors such as violence and drug use. Mayer and Salovey (1993) originally described EI as a specific type of social intelligence. Recently, however, Mayer, Salovey, Caruso, and Sitarenios (2001) have proposed that emotions are fundamentally social in nature, blurring the conceptual distinction between emotional and social intelligences. In the applied context, as we discuss later, many of the educational programs that claim to enhance emotional awareness and functioning may in fact target social behaviors for change. For the most part, existing definitions of EI are structural, viewing EI as a stable quality of the individual, albeit one considered more malleable than cognitive intelligence (Goleman, 1995). However, effective emotional functioning often appears to be situation dependent; the most adaptive action in emotional circumstances depends on the relation between the person (or persons) involved and sociocultural norms. Zeidner et al. (2001) suggested that EI may perhaps be seen in the juncture of person and environment, that is, the extent to which the persons beliefs and action tendencies surrounding given emotions match culturally defined requirements. The structureprocess distinction also highlights difficulties in placing EI within causal models of abilities and behavior. Whether EI represents an aptitude for handling challenging situations, whose expression may vary according to environmental contingencies, or an outcome variable, reflecting the successful resolution of environmental contingencies is not always clear. Alternatively, drawing a rigid line between aptitudes and outcomes is misleading. Current theory on aptitude (cf. Snow, 1992, 1996; Snow, Corno, & Jackson, 1996; see also Stanford Aptitude Seminar, 2002) points to the importance of the synergistic functioning of cognitive ability, emotion, and motivation in educational settings. Zeidner (2001) and Zeidner and Matthews (2000) also espoused a synergistic perspective on EI in several recent publications. Affect and motivation contribute to learning through processes such as strategy choice, focusing of attention, and mindful investment of effort. This perspective suggests a focus on EI as a set of processes supporting adaptation to emotive situations and continued refinement of emotional skills so that the aptitude is itself the outcome of prior learning. Aptitude theory handles the structureprocess dilemma by differentiating molar and molecular perspectives (see Stan-



ford Aptitude Seminar, 2001). At the molar level, a given aptitude is seen as an abstract structural quality of the person, a set of propensities for behavior whose expression depends on situational factors. At the molecular level, aptitude can be seen in the cognitive, affective, and conative processes that support dynamic interaction with the environment. This view emphasizes the reciprocity of personsituation interaction, focusing on how processes support effective action within specific situations, as well as learning from experience (i.e., interaction with the situation changes the person). Thus, we might see EI as constituting both general tendencies toward emotional competence (molar level) and as an emergent quality of emotional processing and regulation that, over time, enhances emotional functioning within some specified situations or contexts (molecular level). From this perspective, EI might be seen as an adaptive trajectory followed by the personsituation interaction. For example, the molar emotional skill of being able to calm an angry person may represent a more complex dynamic transaction as the emotionally intelligent individual becomes progressively more adept at actively shaping the social environment to dissipate anger. We might distinguish (a) processes that reflect the skill, such as perspective taking and expressing sympathy, (b) regulative processes that monitor the ongoing success of calming efforts, and (c) learning processes that modify the persons skills and knowledge of anger dynamically. Conversely, a less emotionally intelligent individual might be prone to exacerbate situations that elicit anger, becoming locked into self-perpetuating cycles of suspicion and hostility. As demonstrated earlier, people have referred to and defined the concept of EI many ways. Herein we adopt a molar definition of EI as an hypothetical individual difference construct, referring to a set of competencies or skills for handling affectively loaded encounters, which might predict future adaptive outcomes (Matthews & Zeidner, 2000, p. 41). We do not rigidly differentiate competencies and skills here, but skills are seen as more complex and more closely linked to specific situations. EI is a snapshot of emotional competencies represented in declarative and procedural long-term memory, although EI changes through experience and learning. Our definition assumes that competencies generalize across emotive situations, although situational relevance of competencies varies. Over short time periods, underlying competencies may be distinguished from outcomes of specific encounters, such as achieving personal goals, interpersonal harmony, and emotional well-being and coping with stress successfully. Over longer periods (weeks and months), processing of outcomes feeds back into change in competencies. Hence, we recognize the merits of the ecological view of aptitude contributors to the Stanford Aptitude Seminar (2001) proposed. A theoretical understanding of emotional competency requires that it be linked to the dynamically changing personsituation system treated holistically. However, at this early stage of EI research, we recognize that practical inter-

ventions are more likely to be geared toward demonstrating changes on standard tests of the construct. We anticipate that demonstrable changes at the molar level will initiate more process-oriented research and, eventually, a more sophisticated conception of EI as emerging from dynamic personsituation interaction. MEASUREMENT Numerous promising developments in EI assessment have occurred since the term first appeared over a decade ago, and we have seen a rapid propagation of EI measures (for reviews see Ciarrochi, Chan, Caputi, & Roberts, 2001; Matthews et al., in press). Popular measures include the Bar-On Emotional Quotient Inventory (EQ-i; Bar-On, 1997), the Schutte Self-Report Inventory (Schutte et al., 1998), the Trait Meta-Mood Scale (Salovey, Mayer, Goldman, Turvey, & Palfai, 1995), the Multi-Factor Emotional Intelligence Scale (MEIS; Mayer et al., 2000), and most recently, the MayerSaloveyCaruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCIET; Mayer, Caruso, Salovey, & Sitarenios, submitted). The content of these EI measures varies as a function of the theoretical conceptualizations and interpretations of EI appearing in the literature. In common with many individual difference constructs, including IQ, the road to understanding EI has started from attempts to develop a satisfactory operational definition of the construct (Matthews et al., in press); that is, researchers have begun with some initial description or conceptualization of the qualities associated with EI and attempted to develop reliable and valid measures for these qualities. However, the conceptual disagreements previously discussed are mirrored by a major disjunction in measurement paradigm. In the one camp are those who conceptualize EI as a well-defined set of emotion-processing skills (e.g., Mayer et al., 1999, 2000). These researchers aim to assess EI through objective performance scales. In the other camp are those who adopt a broader, protean definition, encompassing multiple aspects of personal functioning more loosely related to emotion (e.g., Bar-On, 1997; Boyatzis, Goleman, & Rhee, 2000; Goleman, 1995). These researchers aim to measure EI through self-report protocols designed to assess beliefs and perceptions about an individuals competencies in specific domains of EI (Salovey, Woolery, & Mayer, 2001). Subjective inventories typically sample a diversity of constructs and hence assume a mixed model of EI (i.e., assume the concept to be both an ability and personality trait). We now turn to a detailed discussion of self-report (and then performance-based) measures. Self-Reported Emotional Intelligence Self-report indexes generally ask a person to endorse a series of descriptive statements, usually on some form of rating scale. For example, in the Schutte Self-Report Inventory (Schutte et al., 1998), individuals rate themselves from 1



(strongly disagree) to 5 (strongly agree) on 33 statements (e.g., I know why my emotions change; I expect good things to happen). Several problems and serious omissions currently plague the research on EI that employs self-report methodologies (see Davies et al., 1998; Matthews et al., in press; Zeidner et al., 2001). Self-perceptions of EI may be inaccurate, being vulnerable to the range of response sets and social desirability factors afflicting self-report measures, as well as deception and impression management. Indeed, emotional competence may not be consciously accessible. These problems are, of course, common to all scales based on self-report, including personality assessment. To counteract this criticism in other fields where self-reports are used, researchers have devised several procedures, including comparing self-assessed responses to reports a respondents peers provided (see e.g., Costa & McCrae, 1992). However, validation studies of this type appear not to have been conducted with respect to the vast majority of self-report measures of EI, but they are urgently needed (see Roberts et al., 2001). Whether items asking students to self-appraise intellectual ability (e.g., I am an extremely intelligent student) would make for a valid measure of cognitive intelligence is also questionable. Under the assumption that EI constitutes a traditional form of intelligence, the usefulness of analogous items about ones EI seems doubtful (Salovey, Bedell, Detweiler, & Mayer, 2000). Note that past research has reported rather modest associations between self-rated and actual ability measures. A meta-analytic review of 55 studies Mabe and West (1982) conducted yielded a mean correlation (validity coefficient of self-rating) of 0.34 between self-evaluations of intelligence and objective intelligence test scores. More recent studies (see e.g., Paulhus, Lysy, & Yik, 1998) concurred that the correlations between self-reports of intelligence and mental test performance tend to be rather modest (about r = .30). Moreover, measures of EI that assess noncognitive traits (e.g., assertiveness, optimism, impulse control) seem to be tapping dimensions of individual differences that relate to established personality constructs rather than to contemporary notions of what constitutes intelligence (Davies et al., 1998; Matthews et al., in press; Roberts et al., 2001). Moreover, empirical data pointing to the substantial relation between EI and existing personality measures has, curiously, actually been used to support the discriminant validity and conceptual soundness of EI (see e.g., Bar-On, 2000). For example, Dawda and Harts (2000) recent study revealed average correlations approaching 0.50 between measures of the Big Five Personality Factors (i.e., neuroticism, extroversion, openness, agreeableness, and conscientiousness) and Bar-Ons EQ-i measure. Noting the relative independence of each of the Big Five Personality Factors (e.g., Costa & McCrae, 1992), these data suggest that the EQ-i is nothing but a proxy measure of a composite of Big Five Personality Factors constructs, weighted most strongly toward low neuroticism.

Performance-Based Emotional Intelligence In view of the foregoing problems associated with the use of self-report measures, several authors have advocated the development of more objective performance-based ability indicators of EI (e.g., Mayer et al., 1999, 2000; Mayer & Salovey, 1997; Mayer et al., 2000a, 2000b). According to these authors, ability testing is the gold standard in intelligence research because intelligence refers to the actual capacity to perform well at mental problemsnot just ones beliefs about such capacities (see also Carroll, 1993). Under this framework, a human ability is measured by having a person solve a problem (e.g., identify the emotion in a persons face, story, or painting). In addition, the examinees answer should be available for evaluation against accuracy criteria (Mayer & Geher, 1996). Consequently, task-based measures engage participants in exercises designed to assess competencies supporting emotionally intelligent skills. The ability-based mode of assessment Mayer and Salovey (1997) proposed and its underlying four-branch EI conceptual model has gained currency largely because it appears ability oriented and empirically based. Their four-branch model, described in the section covering definitions, is currently operationalized through the MEIS and the more recent MSCEIT tests. Considerable difficulty exists in determining objectively correct responses to stimuli involving emotional content and in applying truly veridical criteria in scoring tasks of emotional ability. Proponents of EI as a type of cognitive ability have thus promoted three alternative scoring procedures to discriminate right from wrong answers on performance-based measures of EI (Mayer, Caruso et al., 2000). These are: 1. Consensual scoring. An examinee receives credit for endorsing responses that the group endorses. Thus, if the group agrees that a face (or design, passage of music, etc.) conveys a happy or sad emotion, then that becomes the correct response. This measurement approach assumes that observations for a large number of people can be pooled and can serve as reliable measures. 2. Expert scoring. Experts in the field of emotions (e.g., psychologists, psychiatrists, philosophers) examine certain stimuli (e.g., a face, passage of music, a design) and then use their best judgment to determine the emotion expressed in that stimulus. Allegedly, the expert brings professional know-how to bear on judgments about emotional meanings. The test taker receives credit for ratings closest to those that the experts employed. 3. Target scoring. A judge (i.e., the test taker) assesses what a target (e.g., artist, photographer, musician) is portraying at the time he or she was engaged in some emotional activity (e.g., writing a poem, playing a musical score, painting, sculpting, photography). A series of emotion-rating scales is then used to assess the match between the emotions conveyed to the judge by the stimuli and those reported by



the target. Target scoring has received rather little attention in previous research, ostensibly because it is suitable only for emotion identification tasks, and not for other, higher level EI aspects. The use of multiple scoring methods in objective assessment of EI contrasts with the scoring of conventional intelligence tests. The logic of facet analytic thinking (see e.g., Guttman & Levy, 1991; Zeidner & Feitelson, 1989) is that the main criterion for an intelligence task is the application of a true veridical criterion against which one judges a response as correct or incorrect. The scoring of IQ tests is relatively straightforward, although concerns linger over the extent to which intelligence testing is truly culture fair, despite efforts to remove obvious sources of cultural bias. Generally a clear rationale exists for justifying the correctness of an answer, often derived from some formal, rule-bound system such as mathematics, geometry, or logic. It is also relatively straightforward to determine which individuals are expert in these areas and, therefore, are professionally qualified to act as arbiters. By contrast, agreement between scoring methods seems mediocre for the MEIS (Roberts et al., 2001). Reliability of scoring across methods appears to be substantially improved for the MSCEIT (Mayer et al., 2001). However, researchers remain troubled that no logical or conceptual criterion exists for deciding on the correct answer for these tests.

DISTAL DETERMINANTS OF EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE Any systematic attempt to account for the origins and development of emotional competencies needs to consider a confluence of multiple factors, including genetic, temperamental, environmental, and educational variables interacting in complex and dynamic ways.

Genetic Factors We note briefly that EI is most likely to have a heritable component in common with the intelligence and personality factors that correlate with the construct (e.g., Matthews & Deary, 1998; Scarr, 1981; Scarr & Weinberg, 1977; Zeidner, 1995). The precursor to adult personality is temperamentbiological-based qualities such as emotionality, adaptability, sociability (Kagan, 1994). Temperament may impact on the growth and development of major facets of EI such as emotional reactivity and self-control (see Halberstadt, Denham, & Dunsmore, 2001). Research on early emotional development suggests that infants ability to decode emotions and to respond expressively to emotional signals has innate determinants and may be controlled by separate emotion perception and expression systems (Izard, 2001). In a prospective study, preschool emotion labeling predicted positive social behavior and academic competence 4 years later when the children were in third grade (Izard et al., 2001). Hence, emotional competencies may reflect developmental changes as well as the effects of deliberate socialization practices. Effective interventions might be facilitated by quantitative models, which aim to discriminate between the different influences exerted on emotional development. Such models would also tell us how correlations between parents and childrens EI scores (if found empirically) derived from common genes and the influence of the family environment. In fact, these models partition environmental variance into two components: (a) between-family variance and (b) within-family variance. Between-family variance refers to environmental influences associated with being reared in different families, such as differences among families in affective socialization practices, parental emotional expressiveness, reinforcement patterns, parentchild interaction, attachment processes, and the like. By contrast, within-family environmental influences may be attributable to different treatment of individuals reared in the same family (e.g., different emotional behaviors and expressiveness toward siblings reared together in the same family). Carefully constructed behavioral genetic designs that explicitly distinguish and model the effects of genes, environment, and their interaction, using groups such as twins and adopted children, are required to resolve some of the more vexing issues surrounding EI. Unfortunately, to date, no research may be brought to bear on these issues. Nevertheless,

Summary Currently several problems exist with conventional EI assessment methods. Psychometric problems include the questionable rationales for scoring ability-like tests, redundancy with personality for self-report tests, lack of convergence among tests, and lack of discriminant validity. These are exacerbated by a raft of problems with specific tests, such as poor subscale reliabilities and suspect factor structures. Issues also exist related to the culture and gender fairness of the tests, given that scoring method appears to influence group differences (Roberts et al., 2001). The main theoretical problems (in part reflecting neglect of construct validity) include ambiguity about the processes supporting EI and failure to develop and test acceptable criteria for individual differences in real-world adaptation. These various problems may or may not be insuperable, but existing research does not yet even show that EI exists as a well-defined psychometric and theoretical construct, let alone that it is critical for adaptation to real-world emotional challengesa major criteria for meeting the traditional standard for an intelligence. The failure of convergence is a fundamental weakness of the field. For now, we must work with distinct conceptions of EI-as-ability and EI-as-personality, noting for both conceptions that what competencies and processes underpin the construct is not entirely evident.



we note that, although genes may directly code for some aspects of EI, heritability of EI does not imply that the individuals EI is fixed and insensitive to interventions. In addition, geneenvironment interaction may influence observed (phenotypic) EI: genes may influence which environments best foster the development of EI in the child. Genes may also produce indirect effects through affecting personsituation interaction (cf. Stanford Aptitude Seminar, 2001). To demonstrate the notion of aptitude in person in situation, an inhibited temperament might lead to a reduced frequency of interaction with other children, and hence to lack of opportunity for developing emotional skills. The overly excitable infant may initiate overly punitive or controlling behaviors in the caregiver so that the childs biology influences the parents child-rearing practices (Hock, 1992). In sum, research is needed to differentiate the roles in acquisition of emotional competencies of (a) environmental factors, including explicit socialization practices, (b) developmental changes in temperamental emotional response and cognitive capabilities, and (c) geneenvironment interaction.

cialization processes are reported to impact on the development of competencies. These may be summarized as follows: 1. The quality of early attachment between child and caregivers appears related to empathic concern as well as emotional regulation and dysregulation. 2. Parental expressiveness and sensitivity to childrens emotions (particularly in time of need) appears related to emotional understanding and competence, pro-social behavior, sympathy, style of responding to others negative affect, and coping with stress. 3. Child-rearing practices (e.g., authoritative vs. permissive; supportive vs. nonsupportive; autonomous vs. controlling) appears related to the development of self-regulation, psychosocial competence, childrens emotional reactivity, coping, and social competence. 4. Open family discourse about emotions appears related to the childs emotional awareness, social competence, sympathy, and emotion regulation abilities.

Socialization Factors EI proponents claim that parental socialization practices determine, in large part, the development of EI in children (Saarni, 1999, 2000; Salovey & Sluyter, 1997). What children purportedly learn from their parents in the familial context is their emotional knowledge base, as well as competence in emotion identification and regulation (Mayer & Salovey, 1997). Family socialization has been theorized to impact directly the childs social and emotional competency, as well as to work indirectly on socioemotional competence through the childs understanding of emotions and acquisition of social knowledge (see Garner, Jones, & Miner, 1994). Parental socialization of emotional competencies is said to be carried out both by parents acting directly on the child, mainly through the way parents regulate the childrens emotions (e.g., through explicit lessons or informal conversations about emotion regulation). Parental influences are also claimed to act indirectly on the child (e.g., through the observation and modeling of others emotional responses and competencies; Lewis & Saarni, 1985). The basic assumption here is that a child whose parents display constructive EI-related behavior in everyday life is most likely to initiate it as part of his or her own behavioral repertoire. Given the rather tenuous empirical knowledge base relating directly to the origins of EI as a multidimensional construct, drawing any definitive conclusions regarding specific factors impacting EI development is difficult. A substantial body of research exists, however, focusing on the socialization of specific emotional competencies (e.g., emotion perception, emotional understanding, self-regulation), which Saarni (1999), Denham (1998), and Matthews et al. (in press) have recently reviewed. Based on these reviews, several so-

Summary Notwithstanding the progress made in understanding the development of specific emotional and social competencies, we still do not know much about the origins of the multifaceted construct of EI. Broadly, a secure and emotionally open family environment supports the development of emotional competencies. However, current research allows us to make very few further substantiated generalizations about the determinants of childrens EI. We do not know whether good family environments influence competence via direct instruction, availability of positive role models, avoidance of harmful levels of interpersonal conflict, or simply through affording an environment that supports the childs self-directed exploration and acquisition of emotional knowledge. A major problem is the lack of clear criteria for expressions of EI; we cannot say, for example, whether children who interact well with their peers are emotionally intelligent or whether they possess more specific social skills. Further systematic research is needed with regard to the direct contributions of specific parental socialization practices on the parameters of emotional competencies (expression, regulation, coping with stress, etc.). The foregoing type of needed research is nicely exemplified in a study Xu and Corno (1998)conducted, which examined the dynamics of homework and its potential to develop self-responsibility in children. This study shows that everyday experiences with homework, as mediated by parents, provide opportunities for children to learn organizational and self-regulatory skills that presumably enable them to cope with various difficulties associated with doing homework, including negative emotions such as anger and frustration. The authors make the case that homework is a particularly good



reference task for addressing the issue of socialization because it is a task uniquely situated between home and school, evoking a good deal of emotion and involving instruction from both parents and teachers. Little is known about the role of peers and other socializing agents, as well as television and other mass media exposure, in the development of emotions and emotion regulation. Researchers recognize that teachers play an important role in the childs emotional development through modeling emotional behaviors and through explicit instruction (Mayer & Salovey, 1997), but the role of the teacher in shaping EI in the child requires more attention.

PROXIMAL DETERMINANTS OF EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE This section reviews what we know about the education and schooling of EI. We begin by presenting an overview of the growth of school-based socioemotional intervention programs. Most of the current programs hailed as EI interventions fall under the general rubric of social and emotional learning (SEL) programsan umbrella term that provides a common framework for programs with a wide array of specified outcomes. It refers to the knowledge, skills, and competencies that children acquire through social and emotional education, instruction, activities, or promotion efforts. Given the difficulties defining EI (already discussed), we want to stress at the outset that no one program exists that exclusively addresses the full gamut of emotional processes and skills subsumed under the various conceptions of EI. In addition, many programs (e.g., social skills training) make no reference to emotional development, but, may, in fact, improve some aspects of emotional functioning. Consequently, we cannot currently review all such programs, choosing instead to present illustrative examples of programs that focus especially on emotion in conjunction with other types of functioning whose relation to EI is debatable. Whether any such program is in fact directed toward EI depends on the way EI is initially defined.

School-Based Intervention Programs Increasingly, educators and psychologists understand that childrens emotional learning should be given serious consideration and promoted in schools (Elias et al., 1997). Elias et al. call social and emotional education the missing piecethat part of the mission of the school that, although always close to the thoughts of many teachers, somehow eluded them. The trend of bringing emotional literacy into schools makes emotions and social life themselves key topics for learning and discussion, rather than treating these most compelling facets of a childs life as irrelevant intrusions.

The school setting is arguably one of the most important contexts for learning emotional skills and competencies (Mayer & Salovey, 1997). In the process of emotional learning, the individual develops the aptitudes, skills, attitudes, and values necessary to acquire emotional competence. Emotional education may be provided through a variety of diverse efforts such as classroom instruction, extracurricular activities, a supportive school climate, and the involvement of students, teachers, and parents in community activities. Under such a framework, Mayer and Geher (1996), for example, hypothesized that educating those who are low in emotional competencies to improve their abilities to recognize, express, and regulate their feelings better may be possible. However, exactly how this is to be accomplished remains unspecified. Curricular-based programs (reviewed, for example, by Cohen, 1999a) purportedly educate children about the value of emotional competencies. They also seek to foster the development of specific skills in these areas (e.g., recognition of emotions in self and perception of emotions in others, coping skills, conflict-resolution skills). Importantly, they can also be integrated into whatever instructional unit is currently being taught. Given that children can learn by observing and by modeling real, as well as symbolic and representational, models, curricular-based emotional learning comes naturally with many of the liberal arts. For example, children can learn from literature how characters express and display their emotions, what makes the characters feel as they do, how the characters cope in response to their feelings, and how effective the various methods of coping employed are. This form of affective learning proceeds throughout the educational system, and as the literary (or artistic) scenarios become more complex, so does emotional learning, seeking at this point to promote the development of social and emotional competencies. However, the response of educators to the renewed awareness about the importance of emotional education has been mixed (Elias et al., 1997). Emotion education is often viewed with skepticism, as being outside the primary, academic mandate and scope of the schools. Indeed, many educators regard EI curricula and prevention programs as frills or disjointed, fleeting fads (cf. Zins, Elias, Greenberg, & Weissberg, 2000). Opponents of EI literacy programs in the classroom further argue that schools need to concentrate efforts on academic achievement because there is simply not enough time to address other topics, regardless of their merit. Indeed, one may wonder about the questionable nature of some hokey content and the ultimate value in schools spending time on fostering emotional competencies and skills. Thus, the question arises: Do EI programs make the best use of student time? The larger issue is not just whether these programs produce some measurable behavioral change, but whether the time spent on them is the best use of time or whether it would be better spent on academics. Having said this, we have seen an upsurge in interest in social and emotional learning. One possible reason for this is the claim that emotional competencies are of prime importance



for academic success. Accordingly, some claim that EI is positively related to academic achievement and productive experience in the world (Elias et al., 1997). In fact, processes we had considered as purely cognitive or intellectual may be basically phenomena in which the cognitive and emotional aspects work synergistically (see Stanford Aptitude Seminar, 2001). Accordingly, EI programs purportedly buttress skills to listen or focus, to feel committed and responsible for work, to rein impulses, and to cope with upsetting events (Goleman, 1995). Proponents of the EI construct have claimed that research has recently rediscovered what good teachers and parents have known all along. Knowledge about our self and others, as well as the capacity to use this knowledge to solve problems adaptively, provides an essential foundation for academic learning (Cohen, 1999a, 1999b, 1999c; Goleman, 1995). As indicated by a substantial literature linking anxiety and emotional distress to poor academic achievement (see Zeidner, 1998, for review), poor regulation of aversive emotions, particularly debilitating levels of evaluative anxiety, may directly impact student achievement. Thus, evaluation anxiety is frequently cited among the factors at play in determining a wide array of unfavorable outcomes and contingencies, including poor cognitive performance, scholastic underachievement, psychological distress, and ill health. Indeed, many students have the ability to do well on exams, but perform poorly because of their debilitating levels of anxiety. Consequently, test anxiety may limit educational or vocational development because test scores and grades today influence entrance to many educational or vocational training programs. To the extent that anxiety affects performance in some substantial way, some examinees will perform less well than their ability and achievement would otherwise allow. Notwithstanding the potential importance of EI to intellectual attainment, several proponents of the EI construct (Aronson, 2000; Goleman, 1995) have made unsubstantiated (even quite fantastic) claims with respect to the predictive utility of EI in the academic domain. With respect to the incremental validity of EI beyond IQ, the distinguished psychologist Aronson wrote: Studies have demonstrated that emotional intelligence (EQ) and academic intelligence are separate qualities, and that emotional intelligence is a better predictor of success in school (p. 102). Yet Aronson has failed to provide evidence for the foregoing claim by comparing the validity coefficients of IQ and EI in predicting academic performance (via appropriate statistical tests). In fact, few studies have tested for the incremental validity of EI when IQ is held statistically constant. Furthermore, although most SEL programs have not specifically designated improvement of school achievement as one of their primary goals, Goleman has argued that current programs in fact do improve childrens academic achievement scores and school performance. However, we cannot find any empirical evidence to support this claim (for a review see Matthews et al., in press).

Current Programs The idea that students emotional and social problems can be addressed through school-based intervention programs became popular among educational reformers during the 1990s. A broad spectrum of SEL programs, implemented mainly in the United States, designed to teach socioemotional competencies in the school are now available, including social skills training, cognitivebehavioral modification, self-management, and multimodal programs (Topping, Holmes, & Bremner, 2000). Goldman (1995) largely spurred current interest in emotional learning, and Elias et al.s (1997) Promoting Social and Emotional Learning reinforced it. The Nueva School in Hillsborough, California, was the first to start an emotional literacy program, and New Haven, Connecticut, was the first city to implement such a program in public schools districtwide. Once established, the EI concept has proven itself a catalyst to the thinking and planning for educators and policy makers. Thus, well in excess of 700 school districts across the United States have expressed interest in implementing the emotional literacy approach (Goleman, 1995). The Collaborative for Social and Emotional Learning at the University of Illinois reports that today thousands of U.S. schools are using more than 150 emotional literacy programs. Programs seeking to inculcate emotional and social competencies are known by myriad names, such as life-skills training, self-science, education for care, social awareness, social problem-solving, social competency, and resolving conflicts creatively. Most current programs reported in the literature are targeted at the general student population in the United States. Accordingly, they encompass a set of skills believed essential for the average U.S. classroom student (i.e., not only the child suffering from emotional or social adjustment problems). To what degree these programs are appropriate for students in other national or cultural contexts, however, still remains unclear. Also unclear is to what extent those students needing intervention the most (i.e., those characterized by maladaptive emotional responses) would profit from conventional programs requiring them to share their emotions, but that might overwhelm the emotionally oversensitive child. Extensively surveying the myriad SEL intervention programs (or emotion-based curricular materials) available on the market today is beyond the scope of this article (for a recent survey of prevalent programs, see Cohen, 1999a, 1999b, 1999c). In fact, given the meager specific EI content of these programs, doing so would make little sense. To illustrate this point, Table 1 briefly describes salient features (e.g., goals, EI content, evaluation results) underlying a sample of the most popular and frequently referenced of these so-called EI intervention programs (see Goleman, 1995, appendices DF). As Table 1 shows, current intervention programs target a wide array of behavioral objectives, including improving social, communication, and life skills (problem-solving strategies, assertiveness training); modifying emotional regulation

TABLE 1 Selected Socioemotional Learning Intervention Programs: Goals, Target Population, Emotional Intelligence Content, and Evaluation Results Target Population Goals Emotional Intelligence Content Evaluation Results

Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies developers: Kusche and Greenberg (Greenberg, Kusche, Cook, & Quamma, 1995) Grades K12, with emphasis on younger To improve childrens ability to understand, exUnderstanding, discussing, expressing, and regchildren press, and regulate emotions ulating negative emotions (e.g., anger)

Program was effective for both low- and high-risk special students in Grades 23 in improving emotional fluency and the range of vocabulary in discussing emotional experiences, in understanding of emotions, and efficacy beliefs regarding management of emotions and developmental aspects of some elements of emotions

To understand perspective of others Controling impulses To solve social problems Empathic understanding of others feelings Resolving Conflicts Creatively Program(K12) developer: Lantieri (Aber, Jones, Brown, Chaudry, & Samples, 1998) Grades K12 To reduce youth violence by promoting conIdentifying ones own negative feelings in constructive anger control and conflict resolution flict situations skills To improve intergroup relations Regulating anger in ones self

Program evaluation based on two waves of developmental data (5,053 children from Grades 26 from 11 New York elementary schools) Those receiving a high number of lessons had a significantly slower growth in self-reported hostile attributions and teacher-reported aggressive behavior, compared to children receiving fewer lessons. More than 87% of the teachers said that RCCP was having a positive impact on their students. About 92% of the students felt good about themselves, and 64% of the teachers reported less physical roles

To foster a caring and peaceful community of Taking the perspective of others and empathizlearners ing with others feelings Improving Social AwarenessSocial Problem Solving Projectdeveloper: Elias (Clabby & Elias 1999; Elias & Clabby, 1992; Elias, Gara, Ubriaco, Rothbaum, Clabby, & Schuyler, 1986) An initial evaluation of the Improving Social Grades K12, with emphasis on elementary To improve problem-solving skills Students are taught skills in areas loosely overAwareness Program showed that the program and middle school children lapping with emotional intelligence, includreduced the impact of typical middle school ing: awareness of feelings; self-control, anger stressors (Elias & Clabby, 1992) and stress management, emotion-focused coping, adaptability, and perspective taking To enhance involvement Follow-up evaluation 6 years later documented long-term gains in childrens pro-social behavior, sense of efficacy, and reduction in pathology and socially disordered behaviors (aggression, vandalism). Program participants showed higher levels of positive pro-social behavior and lower levels of antisocial and self-destructive behavior (continued)


Target Population Goals Note.

TABLE 1 (Continued) Emotional Intelligence Content Students are taught to recognize emotions in pictures and facial expressions related to emotions. Emotional lessons merge naturally into reading and writing, health, science, and social studies Evaluation Results Clabby & Elias (1999) reported follow-up evaluation results for a program involving a comparison of three cohorts of students who had received social decision-making lessons in elementary school. Elias et al. (1991) reported that students who had received a 2-year social decision-making program in elementary schools showed higher levels of positive pro-social behavior and lower levels of antisocial self-destructive and socially disordered behaviors when followed up in high school 4 to 6 years later than did the control students who had not received this program The K12 curriculum was implemented gradually over a 4-year period, thus enabling the school district to learn from the implementation. Rather informal surveys of the degree of satisfaction with the program were conducted among teachers, parents, administrators, and students (Shriver, Schwab-Stone, & Defalco, 1999) To foster socially skilled and positive relationships with peers and adults

To increase behavior and interpersonal effectiveness

YaleNew Haven Social Competence Promotion Program developer: Weissberg (Shriver, Schwab-Stone, & DeFalco, 1999) Grades 58 To develop self-worth Feelings of awareness, emotion-focused coping, and adaptability; self-management (e.g., self-monitoring, self-control, and perspective taking)

To engage in positive, self-protective practices To feel motivated to contribute responsibly and ethically to peers, family, school, and community Oaklands Child Development Project developers: Schaps (Child Development Project Report, 1999) Grades K6, particularly high-risk children To build a caring and fair school community by nurturing basic values and helping students become caring, fair, and responsible citizens


CDP was evaluated in three separate studies (Child Development Project Report, 1999). Study 1 followed children from Grades K4, with longer term assessments in 6th, 7th, and 8th grades. Study 2 assessed two programs and two comparison schools. Study 3 assessed six districts in the United States. Results point to the central importance of a caring school community for the development of personal and social qualities (e.g., social competence, concern for others, conflict resolution skills, sense of autonomy) and academic orientations (motivation, liking for school) and qualities that help students avoid the risk of problematic behaviors

Impulse control RCCP = Resolving Conflicts Creatively Program; CDP = Child Development Project.



and coping techniques; effective peer-relation training; fostering conflict-resolution and responsible decision-making skills; promoting health; preventing alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drug use; reducing violence; developing self-esteem; and enriching linguistic experiences. Furthermore, programs vary widely with respect to their systematic coverage of the major EI components. Whereas some programs target relatively few elements directly related to EI (e.g., Oakland Child Development Project), others (e.g., Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies [PATHS]) cover a range of important components, processes, or both that are prevalent in EI models. For example, in the former program, perspective taking, conflict-resolution skills, coping with stress, awareness and regulation of emotions, and several other related concepts are all subject to intervention. The behavioral objectives prevalent EI programs most frequently targeted, as represented in Table 1, include: (a) problem solving; (b) awareness and understanding of emotions in self and others; (c) impulse control; (d) emotion regulation; (e) coping with environmental stress and negative emotions; and (f) perspective taking and empathy. EI components can be identified both by examining the program description and curricular materials. Objectives b and d are perhaps the most central to EI, whereas the remainder relate to some definitions of EI but not to others. For example, Goleman (1995) emphasizes impulse control, whereas Bar-On (1997) highlights coping. However, these components are not always specified as program objectives in the program planning stage nor are they consistently assessed during the program evaluation phase. Each of the programs has attracted disproportionate levels of systematic evaluationfor example, the YaleNew Haven Social Competence Promotion Program appears to have proceeded relatively unchecked, whereas several studies have examined PATH. Moreover, some of the evaluation studies may be construed as one-time programs with no long-term follow-up, whereas others have followed up after 5 years or more (Elias & Clabby, 1992). Salovey et al. (2000) concluded that students and teachers tend to like these programs; they see them as helpful and impacting on social behavior, especially at school. However, few of the programs were specifically designed to serve as primary prevention (or similar) interventions for promoting, developing, or fostering EI skills. Goleman (1995; appendices DF) lists various programs said to promote EI, but the majority of these programs were designed for other purposes (e.g., promoting conflict-resolution skills, enhancing problem-solving skills, reducing illegal drug use). Whereas various facets of EI (e.g., emotional perception and awareness, understanding, emotional regulation) are implicit in models developed to promote emotional and social competencies, these facets have rarely been a central focus of preventive intervention. Thus, a violence-reduction or conflict-resolution program may include a module focusing on anger expression and management as a means to help participants control violent behavior and reduce aggressive and offending behavior

without making this the focus of the program. A cursory examination of Table 1 shows that, aside perhaps from the PATH program, none of the others specifically addresses all major facets of EI. In most cases, only one or two facets of emotional competency are actually addressed per program. Given this state of affairs, rather than attempting to draw any conclusions from existing interventions, providing specific tailor-made guidelines for the construction, implementation, and evaluation of EI programs that go beyond existing programs for more general social development might make more sense. Before proceeding, however, we discuss several critical issues that require attention before progressing toward the construction and implementation phases.

Critical Issues One cardinal issue is whether some generalized construct of EI that can be augmented over its component processes actually exists. If not, developing targeted EI programs designed to enhance and develop EI as a general emotional competency seems pointless. Furthermore, if no general EI construct exists, then emotional competence needs to be treated multidimensionally, suggesting that the focus should be on designing programs that develop multiple constituent components of emotional competence (e.g., emotional perception, awareness, management). Additionally, competencies and skills might require to be developed within specific settings (e.g., emotional perception during situations evoking anger, grief, and guilt). Procedural skills (i.e., those skills that are implicit and unconscious) tend to be situation specific rather than general. Thus, a more focused approach might be to promote whatever specific skills are most relevant for a particular target population dealing with some specific issue (e.g., anger management during sports for adolescent girls). To what extent we actually need to develop EI as a general construct or instead focus on the development of specific emotional competencies or skills is still unclear. Moreover, assuming we can identify a coherent EI construct (or set of constructs) that we want to cultivate in the schools, the ultimate aim of EI development requires clarification. Is the aim to bring the emotionally illiterate up to some acceptable norm of emotional behavior? Assuming this proposition is correct, would focusing on the specific deficits of individuals rather than enhancing EI in general not be more productive? Or is the aim to raise a generation of emotional prodigies? Furthermore, if we assume that EI is multidimensional, students may have specific EI profiles with particular strengths and weaknesses. Should educators focus on strengthening weak points in the students emotional profile or further enhancing strengths? A related issue is whether EI shows transferability, which is central to establishing EI as something distinct from acquired socioemotional skills (Matthews & Zeidner, 2000). Will EI skills show transfer and generalizability across con-



texts? That is, if we attempt to develop EI in one context (say the school), will this skill necessarily transfer to other contexts (e.g., family, peer relationships)? Correspondingly, if one emotional skill (e.g., expression of emotions) is taught, are corresponding improvements in other emotional skills (e.g., understanding of emotions) likely? Clearly, acquiring emotional skills does not ensure socially or emotionally intelligent behavior. Thus, perception of sadness in others does not ensure empathic behavior toward another in social situations. Furthermore, instruction in social skills and behaviors should not be taken as a panacea for school problems such as classroom aggression. For example, the more Machiavellian child most likely knows when breaking the rules is personally advantageous. Children with high social intelligence but low empathy appear more likely to use aggression instrumentally (Bjrkqvist, sterman, & Kaukiainen, 2000), and bullies may hold positive perceptions of their social acceptance (David & Kirstner, 2000). EI programs might even help these children to manipulate others!

GUIDELINES FOR THE DEVELOPMENT, IMPLEMENTATION, AND EVALUATION OF EI INTERVENTION PROGRAMS Assuming we can address the foregoing issues adequately, the next step is developing specific EI intervention programs. Most current SEL programs are too broadly defined for their exploration to shed light on EI, and their specific EI content is meager at best (whatever their value in other respects). Hence, the issue is whether educators should aim to develop programs that are distinctive from current practice in focusing primarily on EI, rather than on specific social skills, stress management, or acquisition of specific behaviors. Thus, we now offer several targeted guidelines for the development and assessment of tailor-made EI programs of this kind. Developing and implementing EI programs in the schools rest on several basic assumptions. First, we assumed that schools can and should promote components of EI in a sustained manner throughout the school years. We further assumed that sustained effort to enhance childrens emotional development can help students adapt better to the constraints, pressures, and affordances of their environment. Furthermore, we assumed that developing emotional skills is a comprehensive process involving a total collaborative effort among students, teacher, administrators, and community. Finally, we assumed that implementing any substantive change in schools needs to include all or most of the significant members of the childrens home and environment. Base EI Intervention Programs on a Solid Conceptual Framework EI intervention programs should be based on a solid theoretical framework, permitting a clear definition of EI and a coher-

ent rationale for program objectives and methods for achieving them (Elias et al., 1997; Zins, Travis, & Freppan, 1997). A wide array of models, ranging from behavior change and learning theories to those specific to theories of EI, may potentially serve as guides in identifying aptitudes and understanding the processes and factors involved in developing effective intervention strategies. Settling on a valid definition of EI and identifying critical EI aptitudes is the first step in the process. Clearly, different conceptualizations of EI would lead to different intervention programs and techniques, varying operational measures, and perhaps different evaluation outcomes as well. At this stage, we recommend that the program be explicitly based on one of several alternative conceptualizations previously described. An ability-based conceptualization, such as that that Mayer, Caruso, and Salovey (1999), or Matthews and Zeidner (2000) suggested, would support training of specific competencies such as emotion perception, use of emotion language, and regulation of affect. A mixed conception, including elements of personality, might train the person in qualities such as social skills, impulse control, and adaptive coping with stressful encounters in the school and family. A more dynamic, ecological conception (cf. Stanford Aptitude Seminar, 2001) might focus additionally on whether the school environment promotes effective emotional learning and the processes supporting effective personsituation interaction. By contrast, programs based on intuitive, idiosyncratic, or overinclusive accounts of EI are unlikely to succeed. Carefully Specify Program Goals and Behavioral Outcomes The next challenge is to determine the specific program goals for the target population under consideration (Zins et al., 2000). Program goals should be targeted at strengthening those key components of EI targeted on the basis of the conceptual framework underpinning the program. Once the EI universe of discourse is clearly defined, developing operational program objectives (and procedures to achieve these objectives) should be fairly straightforward. Program materials and procedures could be justified if they were targeted at the specific components subsumed under the EI construct and valid and appropriate measures were developed to assess these specific components. Thus, program developers should state the desired outcomes of the EI training program in terms of the specific skills to be learned (e.g., The sixth-grade student will be able to label 6 positive and 6 negative emotions after the 4th session of the EI training program). Identify the Educational, Sociocultural, and Developmental Context for Program Implementation The specific educational and sociocultural contexts in which EI programs will be implemented needs to be identified and



defined from the outset (Zins et al., 2000), otherwise efforts may be directed at the wrong targets or sociocultural contexts and may consequently prove to be inappropriate and unsuccessful. Relevant constituencies that need to be identified on inception include student age and cultural group, school milieu and culture, teacher and administrative staff characteristics, and the broader community. EI programs should strive to foster appreciation of diversity and respect for the demands of growing up in a pluralistic society. They should be sensitive, relevant, and responsive with regard to the ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic composition of students. These programs should also consider the various needs and demands placed on the faculty and staff delivering the instruction and services (Elias et al., 1997). Furthermore, instructional methods and program content should be developmentally appropriate for the ages (and the grades) at which the program is being delivered (see e.g., Shriver, Schwab-Stone, & DeFalco, 1999). Thus, EI programs should be based on developmentally appropriate, sequential preschool to high school classroom instruction (Cohen, 1999a). Such an EI program would adopt a developmental focus that is attentive to age-related issues and ensure continued intervention across developmental periods. For example, a program designed to improve students skills in identifying, expressing, or understanding emotional states should be structured according to a developmental hierarchybeginning with basic emotions (e.g., happy, sad, angry) and proceeding to more complex emotional states (e.g., jealous, guilty, proud).

these competencies as they themselves develop (Cohen, 1999a, 1999b, 1999c).

Make Provisions for Practice and for Generalizing the Domain of Emotional Skills Across Different Classes of Behavioral Performance Social skills may not be applied automatically to every social task and situation encountered. Thus, to produce meaningful effects on specific target behaviors, including opportunities for students to practice emotional skills in specific and meaningful emotion-laden contexts appears necessary. Consequently, special efforts should be made to promote generalization of EI skills acquired in the classroom to nonclassroom contexts. One way of doing this is to provide students with ample opportunities to practice emotional competencies both within and outside the classroom context. Thus, the curriculum should include strategies to facilitate generalizations across settings, individuals, and academic subjects. In this respect, the cultivation of emotional competencies is similar to the cultivation of cognitive skills: practicing what is learned as well as obtaining environmental feedback on ones performance is absolutely essential.

Ensure Professional Development of Program Personnel Preparing teachers and other staff involved in EI programs adequately so that they can fulfill their professional role in implementing EI interventions is essential. Because nothing in the standard curriculum prepares teachers for this type of affective experience, many teachers are often reluctant to tackle a topic that seems so foreign to their training, routines, and emotional abilities. Therefore, plans must be made to provide the staff that will deliver or supervise the program with sufficient knowledge, skills, and expertise. Thus, professional development programs are essential to train teachers before and during program implementation, including periodic on-site consultations for the program staff.

Fully Integrate EI Programs Into the School Educational and Instructional Curriculum Optimally EI programs should not be taught as add ons to the regular curriculum, but they should be fully integrated into the overall school academic program (Elias et al., 1997; Salovey et al., 1999). Accordingly, an emerging strategy in emotional education is not to create a special class for teaching emotional skills, but rather to complement regular academic subjects by blending lessons on emotions with other topics (e.g., arts, health, science). Thus, students can learn about how to harness emotions in gym; how to handle stress, anxiety, or frustration in math class; and how to empathize with anothers plight when reading powerful literature (Salovey et al., 1999). In fact, one would not expect lasting changes to happen unless the programs principles become part of the entire schools culture (Patti & Lantieri, 1999). Furthermore, effective EI programs should be an essential ongoing part of childrens education over the course of their schooling. Thus, plans should be made to provide the intervention over multiple years (Zins et al., 1997); the ongoing process provides repeated opportunities for students to discover more about themselves and further develop

Use Robust Experimental, Psychometrically Sound Designs for Assessing Program Effectiveness Wherever feasible, future research should employ true experimental designs in which experimental units (classrooms or students) are randomly assigned to experimental or control groups, thereby ensuring the initial equivalence of experimental and control groups. The large majority of SEL intervention programs implemented and assessed to date have employed quasi-experimental designs with intact classrooms



serving as experimental units. This is particularly problematic given that obtaining pretest scores before the implementation of the intervention is frequently not possible. EI programs need to have mechanisms in place to ensure high-quality program monitoring and implementation (Zins et al., 2000). Ensuring that EI programs are delivered as planned and measuring the quality of implementation is crucial. Unless these aspects are evaluated, assessing program outcomes and replicating effect is difficult. Following Greenberg, Kusche, Cook, & Quamma (1995), assessing who participated in the EI training and instruction of students and determining what dose (frequency and duration) of training was provided to implementers, the context of training, the mechanisms in place to determine that program implementation was conducted as planned, the technical support provided, the quality of the intervention, and student affective responses to the program are important. Furthermore, to obtain evidence that progress is being made, the program should be periodically monitored using multiple indicators (e.g., observations, interviews with teachers and students, feedback inventories). Structured classroom observations should be made periodically, as well as visits to both program and comparison schools. To assess program outcomes using reliable and validated measures of EI and its components is critical, rather than employing generic measures of emotional and social skills. Note that most current EI measures have been developed for adult populations with few current measures specifically designed for school-aged populations (one notable exception is Bar-Ons downscaled EQ-i measure for youth). Consequently, we see an urgent need to develop appropriate measures to assess the impact of EI for school-aged children and youth. Unfortunately, as we have discussed, significant problems exist in assessing EI so that we cannot be sure that different measures of EI are assessing the same underlying construct. The personal attribute that is the target of measurement efforts is hazily defined, largely in terms of everyday, implicit, qualities rather than constructs explicitly derived from psychological theory. Distinguishing EI from intelligence, personality, and emotion itself also presents serious conceptual and empirical problems. Developing a reliable and valid measure of EI for tracking school-based interventional programs is necessary but not sufficient. In the longer term, the more finely tuned, process-oriented approach advocated by the Stanford Aptitude Seminar (2001) must supplement the assessment of generalized emotional competence. To develop preventive models that apply to multiple groups (students of diverse ethnicity and cultural groups), we need to evaluate the aptitude by treatment interactions to evaluate which interventions are successful with particular groups. Future evaluations might consider testing for aptitude by treatment and the field may soon be ready for a meta-analysis with students characteristics as blocking variables. Investigation of aptitude treatment interactions (ATIs) is also

compatible with dynamic transactional accounts of classroom learning (see Stanford Aptitude Seminar, 2001).

CONCLUSION Our review of the intervention literature suggests that relatively few programs can be considered EI intervention programs. Indeed, when examining programs touted as EI intervention programs, one is surprised and puzzled by the sparseness of the emotional content of these programs. Often, in cases in which elements of EI have appeared in the programs goal statement, measures of the key components of EI were not used in assessing mediator or outcome variables. Furthermore, among those emotional literacy programs that have been assessed, most suffer from serious methodological flaws (inadequate controls, threats to internal validity, poor measures, assessment of short-term impact alone, etc.). Although an increasing number of programs are being evaluated formally, many still have not been subjected to systematic empirical scrutiny. Researchers have also not demonstrated that interventions focusing on the core constructs of EI, such as emotional awareness, are more successful than those based on other principles, such as behavior modification. One possible reason for this is that most current programs were not designed initially as EI intervention programs, but were designed for other purposes (e.g., social skills or anger-control programs, health education, drug abuse prevention, or delinquency prevention programs). Myriad programs seeking to inculcate emotional and social competencies (life-skills training, self-science, education for care, social awareness, social problem solving, social competency, and resolving conflicts creatively) predate the concept of EI. Proponents of EI intervention have vested these existing programs with a minimal dosage of EI content and have enthusiastically embraced them as their own. Currently, little research shows whether programs touted as EI interventions are actually effective in enhancing the kinds of skills included in current models of EI. Thus, putting aside claims that EI skills can be cultivated and improved in the classrooms, the contributions of the numerous existing programs touted as EI interventions are modest. Where evaluation is possible, outcomes tend to be mixed or moderate (see Topping et al., 2000). Clearly, several guidelines presented herein for the development of EI programs are universal and generic, rather than targeted and specific, and seem to be important for any successful intervention. In fact, the entire history of innovation in education appears to follow the pattern of program and evaluation problems. The ATIs literature makes clear that programs tend to be useful to some of the students some of the time, and this seems to be the guiding principle in evaluation. In actuality, we know very little about the effects of school-based teaching and promotion of EI skills, and we still need to determine to what extent EI programs meaningfully modify EI skills.



How the contribution of EI could be other than limited, given that we know so little about the development and determinants of EI, is difficult to determine (Matthews et al, in press). No published behavioral genetic studies using conventional measures of EI to tease apart biology from environment exist. Also, we know little about the socialization of EI aside from research on separate competencies (emotional awareness and understanding, empathy, emotion regulation). Research is needed to allow us to make substantiated statements on the environmental and genetic determinants of EI. In contrast to the vast body of developmental literature on general intelligence, empirical research on the development of EI is scant indeed. Furthermore, little consensus exists on how to conceptualize and measure EI and little objective evidence exists attesting to the useful role of EI as a predictor of school success and adjustment in addition to that predicted by intelligence and personality factors. Even staunch advocates agree that we will only be able to speak to the optimistic claims about EI after they have been subjected to rigorous controlled evaluation (Salovey et al., 1999). Although in principle, efficient ways may be found to educate those who are low in EI, we currently do not know how this is to be accomplished. Moreover, little empirical evidence generated by current studies would recommend particular intervention strategies. In sum, despite current theorizing about EI programs, we really do not know that much about how they work or, indeed, whether they work at all. Overall, despite the problems in the conceptualization, measurement, and validation of the EI construct, the EI concept has proven itself a catalyst to the thinking and planning of educators and policy makers with respect to training social and emotional skills in the schools. Proponents of EI have supported and added impetus to the trend of bringing emotional literacy into schools and making emotions and social life themselves key topics for learning and discussion. EI research has recognized the potential for using the school setting as one of the most important contexts for learning and teaching of emotional skills and competencies. The school and community may be used as a means of training emotional competencies for real life and fostering the development of specific skills in these areas (e.g., recognition of emotions in self and others, empathy, conflict resolution). In general, EI research has been consistent with a rising tide of understanding among educators that childrens emotional learning is not outside the mandate of the school and, indeed, should be given serious consideration and promoted in schools. Given the present state-of-the-art research and empirical knowledge, the benefits of EI appear to reside largely in raising awareness of emotional issues and motivating educators and managers to take emotional issues seriously. A growing realization acknowledges that the psychological processes considered to be purely cognitive or intellectual, in fact, depend on a synergy between cognition and emotion (or, strictly, between different modes of cognition; see Stanford Aptitude Seminar, 2001). Consequently, developing pro-

grams for improving emotional skills in the classroom and workplace is increasingly seen as legitimate. Whether these programs are actually fostering EI competencies, various skills are most likely learned during participation in these programs. These potentially useful skills include labeling and describing emotions and enriching linguistic experiences; appraising basic emotions in oneself and others; managing emotions; managing conflict; understanding the perspective of others; honing verbal communication skills and decision-making and problem-solving techniques; cultivating a positive outlook toward life; engaging in assertiveness training and effective peer-relation training; promoting health; preventing alcohol, tobacco, and drug use; reducing violence; and developing positive self-esteem. We suspect that such skills are typically specific to the life issue concerned without building any general set of competencies or contributing to solving other problems, but future research may show otherwise. Currently, EI serves, among other things, as a cheerleader, helping to win support for potentially (although not always actually) useful interventions focused on a heterogeneous collection of emotional, cognitive, and behavioral skills. In conclusion, although we have no definitive decision with regard to the successful schooling of EI, dismissing the potential value and importance of school-based EI interventions might be premature. We await systematic program planning and evaluation studies, based on the suggested guidelines offered herein, to inform us whether EI can be effectively schooled.

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