Monday, March 1, 2010

A Study of Emotional Maturity and the Leadership reference among the Higher Secondary Schools in Tirunelveli District

Etymologically the word ‘Emotion’ is derived from the Latin word ‘Emovere’ which means to stir up, to excite or to agitate.
According to Charles E Skinner, An emotionally matured person is the one who is able to keep a lid on his feelings. He can suffer in silence; he can bide his time in spite of present discomfort. He is not subject to swings in mood, he is not volatile. When he does express emotion, he does so with moderation, decency and in good order.
According to Walter D.Smitson (1974), “Emotional maturity is a process in which the personality is continuously striving for greater sense of emotional health, both intra-physically and intrapersonally.”
According to Crow and Crow (1974), “An emotion is an affective experience that accompanies generalizes inner adjustment and mental and psychologicaly stirred up states in an individual and that shows itself in his overt behaviour.”
According to Cole, “The most outstanding make of emotional maturity is the ability to bear tension. Besides, an emotionally matured person persists in the capacity for fun and recreation. He enjoys both play and responsible activities and keeps them in proper balance.”
According to Fred Mc. Kinney, “The characteristics of an emotionally matured person are heterosexuality, appreciation of attitude and behaviour of others, tendency to adopt the attitudes and habits of others and capacity to delay his own responses”.
R.S. Woodworth defined emotions, “As a moved or a stirred up state of an individual. It is a stirred up state of feeling that is the way it appears to the individual himself. It is a disturbed muscular and glandular activity – that is the way it appears to an external observer.”
a) The Ability to learn from Experience
The ability to face reality and to relate positively to life experiences, derive from the ability to learn from experience. Immature people do not learn from experience, whether the experience is positive or negative. They act as if there is no relationship between how they act and consequences that occur to them. They view good or bad experiences as being caused by luck, or fate. They do not accept personal responsibility.
b) Relative Freedom from Tension Symptoms
Immature people feel unloved, avoid reality, are pessimistic about life, get angry easily and attack the people closer to them out of frustration. No wonder they are constantly anxious. The mature person’s mature approach marks him with a relaxed confidence in his ability to get what he wants from life.
c) The ability to give and receive love
Emotional maturity fosters a sense of security which permits vulnerability. A mature person can show his vulnerability by expressing love and accepting expressions of love from those who love him. An immature person in unduly concerned with signs of ‘weakness’ and has difficulty showing and accepting love. The egocentricity of immaturity accepts the love, but fails to recognize the needs of others to receive love. They’ll take it, but they won’t give it.
d) The ability subject to displacement
The anger aroused on account of one stimulus gets transferred to other situations. The anger caused by the rebuking of the officer to his subordinate may be transferred to beating the children at home.
e) The ability to accept frustration
When things don’t go as anticipated, the immature person stamps his feet, holds his breath, and bemourns his fate. The mature person considers using another approach or going in another direction and moves on with his life.
f) The capacity to relate positively to life experiences
A mature person views life experiences as learning experiences and when they are positive, he enjoys and revels in life. When they are negative, he accepts personal responsibility and is confident he can learn from them to improve his life. When things do not go sight he looks for ather opportunities to succeed. The immature person curses the rain while a mature person sells umbrellas.
a) The person who is emotionally mature learns how much control is required to satisfy his own needs and yet conforms to social expectations only a zombie expresses no emotion.
b) On the favourable side, emotions provide sources of enjoyment, motivation and bodily strength and emerge on the unfavourable side; emotions disturb body homeostasis, efficiency and personality.
c) The emotionally mature person is able to control socially disapproved expressions of his emotions or to relieve him of pent up physical and mental energy in a socially acceptable manner.
d) Emotions have both favourable and unfavourable effects on the teacher’s personal and social adjustment.
e) Development of higher tolerance for disagreeable circumstances.
f) Understanding and action in tolerance with limitations.
g) Ability to carry victory and prestige with grace.
h) Freedom from undesirable fear.
i) Ability to delay the gratification of impulses.
j) Increasing satisfaction from socially approved responses.
Harold Schlosberg speaks of three basic dimensions of emotions.
a) Pleasantness – unpleasantness
b) Attention – Rejection
c) Level of activation (Sleep - Tension)
Others add a fourth dimension to the above three – degree of complexity. When these 4 bipolar dimensions are imposed upon the possible emotional states, we get several categories of emotions.
a) Primary goal oriented emotions (anger, joy, fear and grief are also called PRIMARY or basic emotions)
b) Emotions triggered by sensory stimulation (pain, disgust and delight)
c) Emotions related to others (love, envy and pity)
d) Appreciative emotions (wonder and awe)
e) Emotions pertaining to self- appraisal and related to one’s level of aspiration (Pride, shame and guilt)
All these increasingly varied and differentiated patterns of emotional expressions are gradually evolved in the course of development and learning from the initial single generalized emotional response of excitement of the new born infant.
Feelings and emotions are strictly subjective, individual, personal, intimate experiences. Feelings are always present in conscious liking and denote states of satisfaction or dissatisfaction, liking or disliking anything. Emotions are more complex than feelings and involve feelings, impulses to action and adjustment, and bodily changes and excitement. In order to understand the educational significance of emotions and their development, it is essential to lay down criteria for distinguishing between emotional and non-emotional experiences.
a) Emotion is stirred-up condition involving disturbance, excitement, conflict or tension in behaviour. In an emotional situation, some stimulus arouses or stirs emotions into action.
b) An emotion is brought into action by the perception of some stimulus. Psychologically it is a complex experience involving perception and widespread characteristic bodily changes in the action of muscles, glands and the automatic nervous system.
c) Every emotional state involves an impulse to action. There is a drive toward some kind of adjustment, to obtain satisfaction, to effect destruction or escape or to gratify a desire. The emotion subsides to the extent to which adjustments are achieved.
a. Emotions provide energy to an individual to face a particular situation.
b. Emotions work as motivators of our behaviour.
c. Emotions influence our adjustment in the society.
d. High emotional conditions disturb the mental equilibrium of an individual.
e. High emotional conditions disturb the reasoning and thinking of an individual.
Emotional Development is one of the major aspects of human growth and development. Emotions like anger, fear, love etc. play a great role in the development of child’s personality. Not only his physical growth and development is linked with his emotional makeup, but his intellectual, social, moral and aesthetic development are also controlled by his emotional behavior and experiences. The overall importance of emotional experiences in the life of a human being makes it quite essential to know about the emotions.
1. Emotional development during infancy
Form his very birth, the infant cries and his bodily movements seem to give evidence of the presence of emotional element in him.
2. Emotional development during childhood
In the infancy, the child is only concerned with his own well being. Therefore, the emotions are generally aroused by the conditions which are related with his immediate well-being. But as he grows, his world grows large and he has to respond to a variety of stimuli.
During childhood, peer group relationship and school atmosphere and other environmental factors influence his emotional behaviour. His emotions get linked with the new experiences and interest and his emotional behaviour gets linked with the new stimuli. At the same time he does not react to old stimuli. For example, he does not show anger at being dressed or bathed, neither does he show any fear of stranger.
3. Emotional development during adolescence
The emotional balance is once again disturbed in adolescence. The individual once again experiences the violent and intensive current of emotional experiences with regard to emotional experiences. This is the period of intensive storm and stress. At no stage this emotional energy is as strong and dangerous as in adolescence. It is very difficult for a adolescent to exercise control over his emotions. The sudden functioning of sexual glands and tremendous increase in physical energy makes him restless. Moreover, adolescents are not consistent in their emotions. Emotions during this stage fluctuate very frequently and quickly. It makes them moody. Sometimes they are very happy and at another time they are extremely sad and all this happens in a very short time. So there is too much uncertainty in the nature of their emotional states.
4. Emotional development in adulthood
Emotional development reaches its maximum in adulthood. During this stage, generally all individuals attain emotional maturity.
a) Health and physical Development of an Individual
There is a positive correlation between health and physical and emotional development. Children who are physically weak or who suffer from occasional illness are more emotionally upset. Any abnormal increase or decrease in the functioning of glands creates obstacles in the proper emotional development.
b) Family environment and emotional development
A cordial healthy relationship between the parents is very conducive for the emotional development of the child. The order of birth, size of the family, discipline in the family, the parental attitude towards the child (pampered, overprotected or neglected) are all important factors in the emotional development of the child.
c) School Environment
The attitude of the teachers, school discipline, academic facilities available, physical facilities, methods of teaching, co-curricular activities, etc,. all play a pivotal role in developing emotional maturity.
d) Peer group relationship and emotional development
The influence of the classmates and other members of the group affect emotional maturity.
e) Intelligence and Emotional Development
H. Meltzer (1937) as quoted by E.B. Hurlock has observed, “There is less emotional control on an average, among the children of lower intellectual level, than among children of the same group who are bright. An intelligent person, with his thinking and reasoning powers, is in a better position to exercise control over his emotions.”
f) Neighborhood, community and society’s environmental influence and emotional development
The child lives in the society and inherits so many traits of his emotional behaviour from the surrounding.
a) Facial Expressions
Various muscles of the face including the eye, the lips, the nose and the forehead undergo changes by way of twisting and taking different poses. Most of the emotions have their characteristic facial expressions; but it may not always be easy to judge the emotion from these expressions.
b) Muscular adjustments
Sometimes the entire muscular system of the body undergoes contraction and adjustments. The best example of this is perhaps the bodily changes that take place in the ‘startle reaction’. Startle response consists of a sudden movement of the head, blinking of eyes, a characteristic facial expression.
c) Gestures and movements of the hands:
Gestures may sometimes involve the movement of the whole body.
d) Voice gets affected:
When excited, the voice becomes loud and high pitched. Under fear, the voice takes a sinking and low tone.
e) Breathing and heart beat also get affected under emotions:
Sometimes they may be retarded and at other times they are accelerated.
An emotionally matured person will possess the following characteristics.
Ø He is able to control his emotions; sudden inappropriate, out bursts are rarely found.
Ø Almost all emotions can be distinctly seen in him and their pattern of expressions can be easily recognized.
Ø He expresses his emotions in a socially desirable way.
Ø He is guided more by his intellect than his emotions
Ø He never tries to justify himself for his undesirable or improper conduct.
Ø He thinks about others and is keen to maintain a social relationship.
Ø He expresses his emotions at the proper time in the proper place.
Ø A person having emotional maturity shows no sudden shift from one emotion to another.
Ø Emotionally mature person has a positive self concept and does not indulge in feelings of self-pity.
In every society, there is a great demand for leaders. Every society, for its survival, asks for more and better leaders. The insistence on the demand for leaders is evidently due to pressing needs of the environment. There needs to be talent for leading. Everybody cannot lead and every person cannot effectively handle organized human relationships. Keeping this in view, leadership problem is a matter that concerns every member of society. Leaders try to influence the behaviour of others for attainment of some specified goals and objectives. Leadership behaviour is in demand in various fields of life situations social, political, cultural, educational, etc. Leadership is, therefore, a very important feature of many spheres of human activity. Leadership can have far-reaching effect on the zeal and activities of the group and can promote or retard activities in administration, battlefield, industries and in politics.
The leadership process does not involve a leader alone but also others who come in contact with him. In leadership role therefore, psychology of the group and of the follower is the basis of dynamics of leadership. The personality of the leader, the personality of the follower and the characteristics of situation are an appropriate starting for understanding the psychology of leadership.
Robert Tannenbaum and his associates have defined leadership in the following manner, “Leadership is defined as interpersonal influence, exercised in situation and directed through the communication process, towards the attainment of a specified goal or goals. Leadership always involves attempts on the part of a leader to influence or affect the behaviour of or followers in a given situation”.
Reuter has defined leadership in the following words, ‘Leadership is an ability to persuade or direct man without use of prestige or power of formal office or eternal circumstances’.
Leadership, class and hierarchy have gained importance since Victorian era as traits of leadership. These are the traits which were also considered important in school leadership. School leadership was moral leadership. The cultural, patriarchal and hierarchical features of the English society all assisted the rise of the ‘headmaster’ as school leaders, with the role a cultural attribute of his class position. He was characterized by moral energy and a sense of purpose. His secular authority arose from an explicit connection with class hierarchy. The sacred authority was legitimated since all hierarchies were ordained by God. Management was about social control.
School leadership and social democracy the themes were from the 1940s to the 1970s. This was the time of the near hegemony of professionalism in social, political and cultural life. The professional expert was an example of meritocratic success, committed to innovation, a modernizer and consultative in operation, a team leader. The ’good’ school of the social democratic era was one achieved by the application of sensitive personnel management, the introduction of pastoral care systems and a pedagogic regime, which place ‘the needs of the child (or young person)’ at the centre of the educational or organizational culture. This headmaster (Musgrove, 1971) has a different stereotype.
Leadership, accountability and the marketplace covers the 1980s and 1990s, a period of greater state control, decentralization and institutional autonomy. There are traditional academic standards, enterprise education and the development of the competitive market culture. There is a new executive freedom, a new form of management empowerment, allied to the image of managing director; however the market is unprincipled, it allows no normal priorities in its patterns of distribution. Chubb and Moe (1900) state approvingly from the USA: ‘Britain has already broken with tradition and moved boldly towards a choice-based system of public education. The whole world is being swept by a realization that markets have tremendous advantages over central control and bureaucracy’.
In lowa, Ohio State and Michigan studies are historically the most important leadership studies of organizational behaviour. Unfortunately, they are still heavily depending upon, and leadership research has not surged ahead from this relatively auspicious beginning. Before analyzing the current status of leadership research, it is important to look at the theoretical development that has occurred through the years. At first, leaders were thought to be born not made. This so called ‘Great person theory of leadership’. Implied that some individuals are born with certain traits that allow them emerge out of any situation or period of history to become leaders. This evolved into what is now known as the ‘Trait theory of leadership’. The trait approach is concerned with identifying the personality traits of the leader. In the ‘Group approach’, Leadership is viewed more in terms of the leader’s behaviour and how such behaviour affects and is affected by the group of followers.
‘The situational approach’, was initially called ‘Zeittgest’, a German word which means the spirit of the time. In this approach the leader is viewed as a product of time and situation. The person with the particular qualities or traits that a situation requires will emerge as the leader. The view has much historical support as a theoretical basis for leadership.
Charismatic leadership is a throwback to the old conception of leaders as being those who ‘by the force of their person’s abilities’ are capable of having profound and extraordinary effects on followers. Charismatic leaders are characterized by self-confidence and confidence in subordinates, high expectations for subordinates, ideological vision, and the use of personal example. Followers of charismatic leaders identify with the leader and the mission of the leader, exhibit extreme loyalty to a confidence in the leader, emulate the leader’s values, behaviour, drive and self-esteem from their relationship with the leader. The theory predicts that charismatic leaders will produce in follower’s performance beyond expectations as well as strong commitment to the leader and his or her mission. Charismatic leadership traits that foster charismatic attributions include self-confidence, impression, management skills, social sensitivity, and sympathy. Situations that promote charismatic leadership include a crisis requiring dramatic change, or followers who are very dissatisfied with the status quo.
Identifying charismatic characteristics of leaders can become very important as organizations transform traditional ways of being led to meet the challenge of dramatic change. It is this transformation process that has led to the transformational theory.
Burns identified two types of political leadership, transactional and transformational. The traditional transactional leadership involves an exchange relationship between leader and followers, but transformational leadership is based more on leaders shifting the values, beliefs, and needs of their followers.
Ø Contingent reward: Contract exchange of rewards for effect, promises rewards for good performances, recognize accomplishments management by exception (active); watchers and searchers for deviation from rules and standards.
Ø Management by exception (passive): Intervenes only if standards are not met.
Ø Laissez faire: Abdicates responsibilities and avoids making decision.
Ø Inspiration: communicates high expectations, uses symbols to focus effects, and expresses important purpose in simple ways.
Ø Intellectual stimulation: promotes intelligence, rationality, and careful problem solving.
Ø Individual consideration: Gives personal attention, treats each individually, coaches and advices them.
The word ‘style’ is very vague. Yet, it is widely used to describe successful leaders. There are several types of leadership styles given by many psychologists.
Regan leadership style
Ronald Regan was an interesting case study for leadership. Commonly referred to as the ‘Teflon president’ because nothing (no problems or embarrassments) stuck to him, he was popular with some people and unpopular with others. But all agree on one basic fact; he had a teachership style that was interesting and in some ways unique. Close observers have concluded that some of the basic approaches that exemplified Regan’s style were the following:
a) He always put a great deal of emphasis on being able to communicate well.
b) He always tried to convey an optical message. If things were not going well, his emphasis would be on how they could be improved.
c) He repeated his national goals over and over again, so everyone knew what he wanted.
d) He tried to compromise on those issues where he realized he would be unable to achieve all he was seeking.
e) He focused on the major issues without getting bogged down in the day-to-day decision making.
f) During cabinet meetings he encouraged people to speak their minds, if they disagreed with the majority, they should say so, in this way, Regan was able to get input on both sides of the issue under discussion.
g) He believed that the most important thing a leader could do was surround him with the best possible talent. Then he could delegate authority and let his people carry out the overall policy that had been agreed upon.
Kretch and Cruthfield Leadership Style
Kretch and Cruthfield classify leaders into the following two types, based on their style of functioning.
Authoritarian Leaders
The authoritarian leader is an individual who likes to assert his authority. He conducts himself as his fancy takes him. He does not consult any one in taking decisions and leads by creating fear into the hearts of his followers and subordinates. He does not solicit cooperation but prefers to issue orders and punishes those who disobey him while those who fall in line with him are rewarded. He keeps all the authority in his hand and appoints his trusted men in crucial positions. Such type of leadership makes the members overtly submissive but secretly aggressive to it. Group members entirely depend on the leader and lose all initiative. In the absence of the leader, the group cannot function. When practiced in the classroom by the teacher or headmaster, such type of leadership makes the children quite dependent and submissive. In some cases it leads to problem behaviour and maladjustment in children.
Democratic Leaders
These types of leaders are of a democratic mould in their thoughts, feeling, modes of action and conduct. They are very cooperative and accommodative. They do not dominate or dictate but persuade the members to follow them and share the power with other individuals in the groups. They win the hearts of their followers and identify themselves completely with the group they lead. Authority is decentralized and responsibilities are entrusted to different group members who display self-confidence and self-responsibility, and work to the best of their abilities. Even in the absence of the leader, the group continues to function and regains normalcy very quickly. Such type of leadership, if practiced in schools will promote self-confidence, self-responsibility, proper adjustment with others, mutual cooperation etc., ensuring conducive atmosphere for the growth and development of harmonious personality in children.
a) Cultural flexibility: In international assignments this skills refers to cultural awareness and sensitivity.
b) Communication skills: Effective leaders must be able to communicate, in written from, orally, and nonverbally.
c) Traditional management: This activity consists of planning, decision making, and controlling.
d) Human resources management: Since human resource are so much a part of leadership effectiveness, leaders must have human development skills (HRD ) of developing a learning climate, designing training programs, transmitting information and experience, assessing results, providing career counseling, creating organizational change, and adapting learning material.
e) Creativity: Problem solving, innovation, and creativity provide the competitive advantage in today’s global marketplace.
f) Self- management of learning, This skill refers to the need for continuous learning of knowledge and skills.
Effective leadership requires the right behaviours, and attitudes. The Ohio State University studies identified two major dimensions of leadership behaviour, initiating structure and consideration. Initiating structure is the degree to which the leader organizes and defines relationships in the group by such activities as assigning tasks and specifying procedures. Consideration is the degree to which the leader creates an environment of emotional support, warmth, friendliness, and trust. Both initiating structure and consideration spring from leadership preference. Leadership style is a relatively consistent pattern of behaviour that characterizes a leader. The concept of leadership style is an extension of understanding leadership behaviours. Autocratic leader retains most of the authority for themselves. Democratic leaders share decision making with members of the group. In a way leadership preference guides and directs the manner of relating and the style of functioning of a leader.
Hence, the leadership preference of an individual can be observed and measured by observing and measuring the personality traits, characteristics, motives, charisma, behaviour pattern, influence, tactics, capacity for team work, conflict management skills and interest in self-development.
Based on the above theoretical framework of the variables, a study has been attempted by the investigator to study the effect of emotional maturity on the leadership preference among the higher secondary students.
There is an opinion prevailing upon the general puplic that the younger generation lacks emotional maturity and nessary leadership skills to sustain their personal and professional lives in an effective manner. On the contrary there is also anther opinion that the younger generation is dynamic and logical in there approach to life there by developing an effective leadership role with emotional maturity. The researcher wants to investigate the reality of the situation. Hence the problem selected for the survey is entitled,
‘A study of emotional maturity and the leadership preference among the higher secondary school students in Tirunelveli district.’
Emotional maturity
The emotional development of the individual is relatively complete, his adaptability is high, his regressive tendencies are low and his vulnerability is minimal.
In this present investigation, it is assessed by the scores obtained by the students using Emotional Maturity questionnaire.
Leadership preference
“Leader is one who succeeds in getting others to follow him”. In this present study, it is assessed by Leadership Preference Scale by L.I. Bhushan
Higher secondary students
In the present study, student studying in standard XI under Tamilnadu Secondary Education and Matriculation Board have been considered.
Gender refers to the sex of the subjects either male or female
This refers to the qualifications of parents. In this research qualification is classified into illiterate, school and college.
This refers to the employment status of Parent. In this research occupation include private, government and self employed.
This refers to the employment status of Parent. In this research occupation include tamil and English.
This refers to the employment status of Parent. In this research occupation include government, government aided and unaided.
There are two aspects of a person’s life namely Leadership role in every facit of life and effective emotional management. These two factors are very essential in developing life skills of which soft skills have an integral role to play several studies have been attempted abroad. But very few studies of a similar nature are attempted in India: Moreover the environment of our country is different from else where in the world. Hence the findings of these studies can not be objectively replicated in our country. As there is a need to have more studies on the subject in Indian environment especially in Tamilnadu, the investigate or has narrowed down to this problem for the study.
Like other aspects of development, emotional development is gradual and innate maturational process. There appears to be individual differences in such things as susceptibility and responsiveness to emotional situations. Emotional development is linked with other areas of human development like physical, intellectual and social. Any retardation, undue acceleration or abnormal deviation in these areas would inevitably influence normal emotional development resulting in frustration, conflicts and imbalance in behaviour. Frustration is not only a negative thing, a failure to achieve; it is a positive increase of emotional tensions affecting the complete individual. Though frustration is specific to a particular situation, it easily gets generalized into a deeply embedded defensive expression, affecting all future behaviour even in different situations; this is the reason for educators emphasizing the development of all the aspects of the child’s personality, as the desirable goal of educational effort, not merely intellectual powers. Hence Emotioal Maturity is an important aspect in one’s life. Throughout history the difference between success and failure, whether in war, business, a protest movement or a cricket game has been attributed to leadership. Using the right type of leadership is to achieve the present goals within the framework of the type of personality. It is essential to study the relations that exist between leadership preferences. Leadership is developed in an individual as he interacts with the people and the environment. As an individual develops, he experiences various situations that provide opportunities for acquiring leadership behaviour. Higher Secondary Students are at the adolescent stage. At this stage of their life, most of them try to discover themselves in different aspects of their personality. Opportunities are varied and it is at this level that most of them are expected to identify and develop leadership skills. They are further challenged from different angles to develop their personality as they are involved in all the activities of the institution they belong to. Hence Leadership preference is found to be very significant.
The following objectives have been set in the present study
To find out whether there is any significant difference in Emotional maturity of higher secondary school students based on the following
Medium of Instruction
Type of School
Educational level of parent
Occupation of parent
To find out whether there is any significant difference in Leadership Preference of higher secondary school students based on the following
Medium of Instruction
Type of School
Educational level of parent
Occupation of parent
To find out whether there is any association between Emotional Maturity of higher secondary school students and the following
Medium of Instruction
Type of School
Educational level of parent
Occupation of parent
To find out whether there is any association between Emotional Maturity of higher secondary school students and the following
Medium of Instruction
Type of School
Educational level of parent
Occupation of parent
To find out whether there is correlation between Emotional maturity and Leadership preference of higher secondary school students.
In this study only the following variables are taken into consideration with respect to Emotional Maturity and Leadership Preference namely Gender, Medium, Type of schools, Parental Education and Parental Occupation. There may be many other variables such as Community, Religion, etc which may have an impact on the research variable under study. These are not taken into account.
The delimitations of the study are the following
1. The sample is restricted to 300 students
2. Students from XI standard alone are considered for the study.
3. The study is limited only to six schools in Tirunelveli District, Tamilnadu.
The first chapter highlights the introduction to the problem and its statement, the operational definitions of the terms, need for the study, objectives and limitations of the study. A review of related literature, design of the study, analysis and interpretation of the data and summary of the results are dealt with in the chapters that follow.


Testing said...

Thanks for the useful info.

vibha said...

Thanks a lot for providing useful information

pilne sangma said...

NO findings was given in this present post . would be very greatful if you post the chapters in which there are findings of this study