Personality Test of General Emotional Intelligence: The GEIS & Optional Software

Background and Definition of Emotional Intelligence
The concept of emotional intelligence (EQ or EI) has been offered to supplement general intelligence (i.e., IQ), because IQ does not seem to adequately explain individual difference in life success. Other traits relating to emotional functioning are needed for a better explanation of individual differences in achieving life success.

The General Emotional Intelligence Scale (GEIS) described here tests for a broad set of individual characteristics associated with emotional intelligence. The test result is a single summary score of general emotional intelligence and represents an overall estimate of the emotional intelligence of each individual tested. Please see the following paragraph that defines "emotional intelligence" and the section, "Definition of Emotional Thinking," to appreciate the comprehensive nature of the GEIS.

Typically, "emotional intelligence" is defined in terms of emotional empathy, attention to, and discrimination of, one's emotions, accurate recognition of one's own and others' moods, mood management or control over emotions, response with appropriate (adaptive) emotions and behaviors in various life situations, especially to stress and difficult situations, balancing of honest expression of emotions against courtesy, consideration, and respect (i.e., possession of good social skills and communication skills). Additional, though less often mentioned qualities, include selection of work that is emotionally rewarding to avoid procrastination, self-doubt, and low achievement (i.e., good self-motivation and goal management) and a balance between work, home, and recreational life.

The Emotional Intelligence items of the GEIS cast a broad net and tap highly diverse characteristics that are generally assumed to be part of this overarching trait. They represent approximately 80% of all items of the GEIS.

Definition of Emotional Thinking
"Emotional thinking" refers to the impact of emotions on thinking and action and relates to low emotional control or inadequate mood regulation -- key concepts in the conventional definition of emotional intelligence. Specifically, "emotional thinking" is defined as excessive influence of emotions on thought processes that can result in selective, imbalanced, or distorted cognition of situations and relationships. The Emotional Thinking Scale items constitute the final 8 items of the GEIS and make up approximately 20% of the total test. These are scored in reverse, that is, for low emotional thinking so the total score of these 8 items will correlate positively with the total score for the remaining items of the GEIS.

The Emotional Thinking Scale(ETS)
Software for Administring and Scoring the GEIS
Software for administering, scoring, and interpreting the General Emotional Intelligence Scale is available. It is a console (non-graphic) program and runs on IBM-compatible machines. The software may be useful even if you plan on group administering the paper and pencil version of the GEIS given in the test manual. In that case, you can use the software to input data from each participant and have the software compute total scores and z-scores for all participants.

The software provides (a) total score, equivalent z-score, equivalent percentile score, and interpretation of these scores for each person tested and (b) a database of scores for all individuals tested. Additionally, the software includes a feature for exporting a printable text file (.txt format) of the data.

The software is easy to use and is password protected so that the Administrator can control access to the database of results. In this way, individuals being tested cannot have access to the results, unless the Administrator chooses to report such results to them.

A common problem in personality testing is that some respondents attempt to slant their answers to make good impressions and, as a result, test results become misleading. When respondents slant answers, scores on socially desirable traits become inflated or greater than they would have been in the absence of response slanting. The software for the GEIS includes a built-in feature to help detect when such response slanting/faking occurs and warns the tester when results become "unacceptable." The latter data on response slanting are also part of the ASCII file of all test results that can be output from the program.

Scale Description: Format, Sample Items, Features
Sample Items
Test Features
Validity Data
Persons with higher General Emotional Intelligence Scale (GEIS) scores, compared with those with lower scores, have been found to show:

In a recent study, Scott (2005) found the GEIS to be predictive of ethical decision making.

Three Additional Important Measures of Emotional Intelligence
A Spanish translation of the GEIS is available and can be obtained from Albert Mehrabian.

Mehrabian, A. (2000). Beyond IQ: Broad-based measurement of individual success potential or "emotional intelligence." Genetic, Social, and General Psychology Monographs, 126, 133-239.

Scott, B.S. (2005). The relationship between emotional intelligence and ethical decision making. Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: Humanities & Social Sciences. 65(8-A), 2899.

Copyright© 1995-2010 by Albert Mehrabian