Emotional intelligence, religiosity, and authoritarianism in Canadian Bible college students
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SubjectChurch college students -- Canada
Church college students -- Religious life
Authoritarianism (Personality trait)
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Institutions of higher education are required to initiate student outcomes assessment programs. Such programs are more complex in Bible colleges due to concerns related to spiritual and religious development and the lack of appropriate related assessment tools. Further, as there are indications that religious development may result in increased authoritarianism, this factor requires assessment. Finally, both secular and religious institutions are concerned with socio-emotional development outcomes but these have been difficult to operationalize. The research introduces outcomes assessment and then defines emotional intelligence, religiosity, and authoritarianism. Their theoretical bases are examined, theological considerations are appended and measures of the constructs are described. Specifically, the literature review literature supports an understanding of the emotions as based in cognitive appraisals. There is an exploration of the relationship between religiosity and authoritarianism. Significant attention is paid to factor analysis of the instruments employed. These included the Social Conformity-Autonomy Scale , the Self-Report Emotional Intelligence Test , and the IEQ Scales of Religiosity . The research was cross-sectional and assessed students as freshmen and as seniors. Correlational analysis was applied. Findings reflected those of prior research with similar populations but there were notable results. First, contrary to standard collegians, Bible college students both enter with, and maintain, high intrinsic religiosity. Males increased significantly in quest religiosity while maintaining an intrinsic orientation. The finding supports the hypothesis of a "soft quest" religiosity that permits doubt and supports questioning within a faith framework. Although highly religious, Bible college students did not display elevated levels of authoritarianism. In addition, there were no significant changes in found levels of EI between freshmen and seniors. EI did positively correlated with intrinsic religiosity while quest negatively correlated with authoritarianism. The research concludes with an assessment of the devices for use in outcomes assessment. Both the IEQ Scales and the SCA Scale show promise for use in this regard.