What is Emotional Intelligence? And what is an Emotional Intelligence Test
PsychologyToday defines emotional intelligence as “the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others.” There are three skills that are said to apply to this type of intelligence. Those three skills are being aware of one’s emotions, embracing them and using them to help tackle problems and managing one’s emotions as well as the emotions of those around them. Emotional intelligence is also defined as a social competency type that takes the previously mentioned skills into account.
The emotional intelligence of any individual gives them their ability to use knowledge to control their feelings. For this reason, emotional intelligence is considered to be different from other things used to measure a person’s overall intelligence.
As far back as 1958, emotional intelligence was considered to be the capacity one has to cope with the environment they find themselves surrounded by.
Emotional Intelligence Tests
To determine a person’s emotional intelligence it is necessary to administer a series of relevant questions. Once an individual has answered the series of questions their answers are measured against either a consensus scoring or an expert scoring. An example of an emotional intelligence test is showing an individual several faces and having them determine the emotions being expressed by each face. During this type of test an individual is also asked questions in which they must respond to emotional scenarios and state how they would solve an emotional problem such as helping a friend deal with a job loss.
Emotional Intelligence Appraisal Test
Another method of testing one’s emotional intelligence is to provide them with a self-report questionnaire. This is generally used to determine personality traits such as being introverted or extroverted. Using self report questionnaires to help determine one’s emotional intelligence is something that has been done for many years, although there are disadvantages to using this method. Some argue that the results of such a questionnaire would not be valid because people would not give objective answers. For this reasons a self report questionnaire is used to determine an individual’s true image of themselves.
Measuring Emotional Intelligence
Research has suggested that there are many different ways in which emotional intelligence can be measured. Interpersonal Perception Task is one way of measuring it that was discovered within the last decade. For researcher the focus for the future is to come up with more precise ways to measure for emotional intelligence than the ways that have been used so far.
History of Emotional Intelligence
The term emotional intelligence was used in an academic paper for the first time in 1985. A doctorate student included the term in the title of his dissertation. After that, the academic world completely ignored the term until 1990. At that time professors from Yale University and the University of New Hampshire each published an article in an academic journal discussing the development of a scientific measure that could be used to determine the emotional abilities of individuals. Throughout the course of researching their articles the professors discovered that while some individuals are skilled at identifying feelings in those around them as well as themselves others do not possess this skill. Of the two academic papers, one of them was given the title of “Emotional Intelligence.”
The same year they published their articles both professors developed a test designed to determine a person’s emotional intelligence. Two years later a writer for Popular Psychology magazine contacted the two professors to seek out their permission to use the term emotional intelligence in a book he was writing. When he was granted permission to do so he changed the subject of his book from emotional literacy to emotional intelligence. When the book was released in 1995 the title of it was “Emotional Intelligence,” which landed on the New York Times best seller list for the entire first year of its release. Three years later the author wrote another book that he titled “Working with Emotional Intelligence.” The content of the book expanded on the definition of the term. In his definition he declared that the term was made up of 25 different competent and ability levels as well as skills.
Emotional intelligence is made up of four characteristics. One is self awareness, of effectively being able to understand one’s emotions, one is self management, or being able to successfully manage one’s emotions, one is social awareness, or being conscious of other peoples’ emotions and able to feel empathy for them and one is social skills, or handling the emotions of those around them in an effective manner.
Known Facts About Emotional Intelligence
Research has been done that has determined that individuals who have a high level of emotional intelligence often perform their jobs better and are more mentally and physically health than those with a lower level of this type of intelligence. One occupation that requires people to have a high level of emotional intelligence are teachers. To be effective any teacher must be able to understand how their students think and how that thinking affects their actions and behaviors. Teachers who can ease a student’s emotions are generally better at dealing with conflict between classmates. This helps students develop both socially and emotionally. It is also beneficial to teachers to be emotionally intelligent because this makes it less likely a teacher will get burned out doing his or her job. However, there are issues surrounding attempting to help teachers learn to increase or develop their emotional intelligence. Some argue that the better option is to simply help teachers become more emotionally competent.
Emotional Intelligence In Schools
Since the 1990s when it first became a more widely discussed subject than it had been in the past, emotional intelligence has been integrated into many school’s educational programs. This is likely because increasing a student’s emotional intelligence can help them learn more in school and perform better in their classes. Educational curriculum and training programs have been introduced into schools to increase the emotional intelligence of students.
Research has shown that as early as in the preschool years children can begin to be taught about emotional intelligence. It has also shown that when this is taught throughout the school years students become less likely to drop out and less likely to engage in behaviors deemed risky. Some of the organizations that have been formed to help teach emotional intelligence in schools are:
- The George Lucas Educational Foundation
- The Emotional Intelligence Network
- The Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning
- Six Seconds
- The Center for Social Emotional Learning
Emotional Intelligence In The Workplace
Forbes.com has covered the topic of emotional intelligence in the workplace. The magazine reported the findings of a study conducted by TalentSmart that determined 58% of people who are successful at their job have a high level of emotional intelligence. It is also the strongest predictor of how well any given employee will perform their job. The study found that of the top performers in companies throughout the world are highly emotionally intelligent. It also found that the 90% of workers with a high level of emotional intelligence earn an additional $29,000 a year more than their counterparts with lower emotional intelligence. Every time a worker’s emotional intelligence increases by one point another $1,300 is added to the salary they earn in a year, regardless of what field they work in or what position they hold in that field.
Emotional Intelligence Source
The source of emotional intelligence is the communication that takes place between the area of the brain that controls one’s rationality and the one that controls their emotion. Emotional intelligence actually has its beginnings in a person’s spinal cord. A person’s senses have to pass through their limbic system because this is where a person’s emotions come from. The senses move from the limbic system to the part of the human brain that controls a person’s rationality. This means that when someone witnesses an event they react to it emotionally before they react to it rationally. Certain strategies of thinking and processing information can be used to allow someone to train their brain to be more emotionally intelligent.
To determine one’s emotional intelligence is generally done using a psychology test. Various tests can be accessed on the Internet or people can visit a doctor that is qualified to administer one. The future of emotional intelligence is not a clear one.