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Daniel Goleman speaks at UEM about the benefits of Emotional Intelligence in Education


Daniel Goleman speaks at UEM

On June 2, 2011, Daniel Goleman spoke at Universidad Europea de Madrid's Villaviciosa de Odón Campus delivering a speech titled "Emotional intelligence: how to multiply the power of emotional intelligence to enhance your leadership skills." During his speech, Goleman addressed the relationship between education and emotional intelligence and the benefits of applying emotional intelligence in education, an increasingly relevant theory in the international arena transcending its normal use within the field of management.

Miguel Carmelo, President of Universidad Europea de Madrid and the Mediterranean Region of Laureate International Universities, welcomed Goleman to the institution. According to Dr. Carmelo, "Emotional intelligence is a quality increasingly valued at all levels of the educational environment and has a clearly positive influence on academic achievement, student involvement in the learning process, and the student-teacher relationship. At UEM, we know that the acquisition of these skills benefits our students, our teachers and our entire institution. Daniel Goleman's research on training and leadership are part of our educational model. It is an honor to have with us today a figure so important to the future of education."

To begin his presentation, Daniel Goleman emphasized the influence that emotional intelligence has on business as well as other areas like education. "All leaders must have functional knowledge, but to succeed they must be able to rely on their emotional intelligence, which is the catalyst of all our cognitive abilities," he said. "This is taken very seriously by the business world as 90% of leadership skills depend on emotional intelligence and is their main value. Only 10% of success depends on IQ, the rest is emotional intelligence and other variable factors," he added.

The power of this skill for humans is demonstrated by advances in neuroscience, which show how an emotionally intelligent individual may be able to contextualize and control their impulses to act rationally. "If we learn to work emotional self-awareness into ourselves, we will be able to respond adequately in times of crisis and control our impulses, which will lead us to make the best decisions," he noted.

In this sense, Goleman said social emotional learning fits in education. "Through neuroplasticity, which allows us to model the brains of people up to 20 years old, educators can help children and young people achieve greater maturity." After mentioning some of the research, he highlighted Singapore's educational system as a model, since despite the scarcity of resources, "it is the only country in the world in which emotional intelligence is compulsory in teaching. This prepares students for real life and makes them better people. It represents 'education' par excellence."

In the field of education, teachers must help their students stay in the state of mind known as "flow", which is directly between motivation and stress and is the best setting for the brain and performance. "Social intelligence can have a major influence on education and leadership if the leader, in this case the teacher, is able to boost their students' brains and they spread their attitude and emotional state. It is essential for a teacher to make their class feel relaxed and for students to enjoy their learning environment for them to improve performance" he concluded.

After thanking Goleman for visiting the university, Agueda Benito, UEM's Rector, moderated a Q&A session during which attendees were able to ask the expert about the many applications of emotional intelligence in teaching, sports, interpersonal relationships in a globalized world, social networks, new information technologies and communication tools as well as its influence on health.

After the presentation, it was announced that a new Education Department will be added to UEM's Faculty of Social Sciences starting in September 2011 with degrees focused on Education and Primary Education. Both programs will place high importance on language to train bilingual teachers to meet the needs of national and international schools.

With the launch of this new academic department, UEM has confirmed its commitment to education and offering a complete academic offering with specialized programs that include all stages of higher education, from technical training to higher level vocational training and graduate programs.