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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Counseling Psychology

First Advisor

Linda Webster

First Committee Member

Rachelle Hackett

Second Committee Member

Colin McGrattan

Third Committee Member

Thomas Nelson


This study is a phenomenological investigation of children's emotional development and experience focusing on the secondary emotion of pride. The purposes of this study were: (1) to examine the phenomenon of the development of pride in six- and seven-year-old children's socioemotional interactions, (2) to understand how and when young children experience, live, and display emotion, and (3) to develop insight about a child's perspective of their experience of emotion by entering into their field of perception. Respondents included six children, the two parents of each child, and the children's teachers. Theory-based sampling was used. The data were collected through the use of interviews with children, their parents and their teachers. The respondents described their emotion experiences, their interactions with others, and elaborated on their stories. What emerged from the data was consistent with existing literature in that at around the age of six, the components which allow for the construct of pride: perception, cognitive abilities, verbal skills, and socioemotional capacities, are present but not necessarily connected. By seven years of age, the component pieces are generally beginning to coalesce into a describable phenomenon. Second, pride was communicated between children and others often deliberately and purposefully, as well as indirectly and unconsciously. Third, the extracted meaning revealed that the essence of the phenomenon of pride was a positive, desirable feeling, the experience of pride for children and adults was about having a relationship with another person and pride can be related to either one's own accomplishments, another person's accomplishments, or an individual's qualities. Additionally, when pride is overemphasized it can be experienced as a negative feeling, and pride appeared to be interconnected with one's sense of humility. Recommendations are provided for parents, educators, and therapists. Studies which may investigate more fully the various aspects of socioemotional development are offered.





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