Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


School of Teacher Education and Leadership

Committee Chair(s)

Deborah Byrnes


Deborah Byrnes


Kimberly Lott


Steven O. Laing


Edward Reeve


Joseph Matthews


The purpose of this study was to explore the role of emotional intelligence (EI) in medical laboratory science, as perceived by laboratory administrators. To collect and evaluate these perceptions, a survey was developed and distributed to over 1,400 medical laboratory administrators throughout the U.S. during January and February of 2013. In addition to demographic-based questions, the survey contained a list of 16 items, three skills traditionally considered important for successful work in the medical laboratory as well as 13 EI-related items. Laboratory administrators were asked to rate each item for its importance for job performance, their satisfaction with the item's demonstration among currently working medical laboratory scientists (MLS) and the amount of responsibility college-based medical laboratory science programs should assume for the development of each skill or attribute. Participants were also asked about EI training in their laboratories and were given the opportunity to express any thoughts or opinions about EI as it related to medical laboratory science. This study revealed that each EI item, as well as each of the three other items, was considered to be very or extremely important for successful job performance. Administrators conveyed that they were satisfied overall, but indicated room for improvement in all areas, especially those related to EI. Those surveyed emphasized that medical laboratory science programs should continue to carry the bulk of the responsibility for the development of technical skills and theoretical knowledge and expressed support for increased attention to EI concepts at the individual, laboratory, and program levels.



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