Institute of Art Design + Technology
Dún Laoghaire

Lily King 

BSc [Hons] Applied Psychology

My name is Lily King and I am a final year Applied Psychology student in IADT, specializing in the Practice Path. Throughout this course, I have found an interest in many of the modules, particularly in Forensic, Abnormal and Transpersonal Psychology. I hope to utilize the knowledge I have obtained from this course, to complete a masters degree in Clinical Psychology in the future. Please feel free to contact me through Linkedin if you have any questions about my project!

Project Description

My final year project aimed to investigate the relationship between college students’ self-esteem, their emotional intelligence and their sense of humour. Previous research has indicated a positive relationship between higher self-esteem and higher emotional intelligence. Other research has observed a positive relationship between higher self-esteem and higher sense of humour. However, there is currently little research on the combined relationship between college students' self-esteem, their sense of humour and their emotional intelligence. The present study was achieved by conducting an online survey using three scales. Data was collected and statistically analysed. The results were discussed with reference to previous research and existing theories, along with suggestions for future research.

Project Objectives

My study aimed to answer the following research question: ‘Is there a significant relationship between college students’ emotional intelligence, sense of humour and self-esteem?’ My study aimed to add to existing literature, on factors beyond academia that may predict college students’ self-esteem. A convenience sample of 180 participants (110 female, 64 male, 4 non-binary, 2 gender-fluid), ranging from age 18-61 years (M=22.32, SD=5.63) partook in my study. The participants completed an online survey, which employed the ‘Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale’, ‘Brief Emotional Intelligence Scale’, and the ‘Multidimensional Sense of Humour Scale’. The study employed a quantitative, cross-sectional, and correlational design. The target variable of the study was self-esteem, the two factor variables were emotional intelligence and sense of humour.

Project Outcomes

A multiple linear regression analysis was conducted to investigate the relationship between one target variable (self-esteem) and two factor variables (emotional intelligence, sense of humour). The findings supported existing research that observed a strong positive relationship between emotional intelligence and self-esteem. However, the findings contradicted previous studies that have suggested a strong positive relationship between sense of humour and self-esteem. Future studies may benefit from a longitudinal design, a larger sample size, the use of a different scale to measure sense of humour and equalised gender groups. This study serves as a foundation for future research, on holistic factors beyond academia that may predict college students’ self-esteem.

Thesis Title

'Investigating the relationship between Self-Esteem, Emotional Intelligence & Sense of Humor in College Students'