Organization, Information and Learning Sciences ETDs

Publication Date

Fall 11-14-2017


This was a descriptive study which examined the psychological components involved in the completion of a Ph.D. journey. I used a phenomenological approach to investigate doctoral program experiences (n=23), seeking to identify strategies, skills, and experiences commonly shared by successful Ph.D. students through a lens of Transformational Learning, Psychological Capital (PsyCap), and Emotional Intelligence (EI). Assessment measures included interviews, questionnaires, and the administration of both the Emotional Intelligence Appraisal (EIA) and Psychological Capital Questionnaires (PCQ). Findings revealed the presence of Grit, adequate support systems, balance, positive self-talk, and a moderately high level of PsyCap. A correlational analysis indicated a moderately strong positive correlation (r = 0.62) between EI and PsyCap. Finally, suggestions were provided for graduate departments to help support doctoral success.

Degree Name

Organization, Information and Learning Sciences

Level of Degree


Department Name

Organization, Information & Learning Sciences

First Committee Member (Chair)

Patricia Boverie

Second Committee Member

Frances Wilkinson

Third Committee Member

Nick Flor

Fourth Committee Member

Robert Grassberger

Fifth Committee Member

Mary Cooley




Positive Psychology, Emotional Intelligence, Psychological Capital, Grit, Perseverance

Document Type