Date of Conferral







Sandra Rasmussen


The use of religion-based spirituality was examined as a factor in strengthening and increasing emotional intelligence and regulation, facilitating relationship choices and maintenance, and as a key factor in the decision-making process of dating and partner selection among African Americans. The theoretical framework for this study included Gardner's theory of multiple intelligences, on which both theories of spiritual and emotional intelligence stand, and Bowlby's theory of attachment. A multiple regression analysis was conducted to analyze relationships between spiritual and emotional intelligences and attachment styles among African American adults. In a criterion-based purposeful sample of 98 African American participants aged 27 and older, a negative correlation was found between high levels of spiritual and emotional intelligence in African Americans and attachment styles, meaning secure attachment styles were found in African Americans with higher levels of both spiritual and emotional intelligence. The study contributes to the validity and reliability of the SISRI, SSEIT, and the ECR-R among African Americans. Scores on these instruments in the study were within normal range. The information in this study may serve as a foundation for future studies on the importance of religion-based spirituality and the strengthening of emotional intelligence to facilitate successful romantic and marital relationships among African Americans, leading to stronger families and communities.