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Notes from: Selecting a Measure of Emotional Intelligence: The Case for Ability Scales, (2000) by Mayer et al

Abstract from Wayne Payne's 1986 dissertation titled: A Study of Emotion: Developing Emotional Intelligence; Self-Integration; Relating to Fear, Pain and Desire (Theory, Structure of Reality, Problem-solving, Contraction/Expansion, Tuning In, Coming Out/Letting Go

Notes from: Designing Instruction for Emotional Intelligence, (2000) by Goldsworthy

Selecting a Measure of Emotional Intelligence: The Case for Ability Scales, by J.D. Mayer, D. Caruso, P. Salovey. "Second Submission" Version: January 11, 2000 Chapter to appear in: R. Bar-On, & J. D. A. Parker (Eds.). The Handbook of Emotional Intelligence.

Note from the authors: Pending Publication, Please Do Not Quote or Cite Without Permission.

Here are some quick notes on this paper.

In this paper the authors compare their tests to others which also claim to be emotional intelligence tests and then they give a considerable amount of information about their test design. They also give new information on the correlates to emotional intelligence as it is measured by their tests, the MEIS, and the new version, the MSCEIT.

Beginning with the comparison between their test and the BarOn EQi test, EQ Map and the ECI (Emotional Competence Test), one of the conclusions is that the other tests are measuring things which have already been measured with personality tests. The authors briefly discuss the issues of content validity and incremental validity, and they address concerns about the validity and reliability of their earlier tests which were raised by Davies, Stankov and Roberts in 1998. With respect to this issue, the authors say

...the degree of overlap between self-report scales of emotional intelligence and already-existing personality scales is a matter of legitimate concern, because, given the investment many people are placing in emotional intelligence, one would not want to reinvent the wheel....

The authors next describe some of the problems with self-report tests, and "informant" tests and offer research to support their position that their ability test is preferable to the three other tests which are a mixture of self-report and informant.

Next the problems inherent in designing a good ability test are discussed in an effort to demonstrate that they have given thoughtful consideration to these problems. In particular they address how they came up with the "right answers" for their test questions, this way being a combination of target criteria, expert criteria and consensus critieria, and they discuss correlations between these three methods.

Next they answer the question of how they could measure whether someone can identify their own feelings. They answer this by saying that other studies showed that if people could recognize other people's feelings, then they could generally recognize their own as well. The authors concluded that if they could test people's ability to identify emotion in others, then this would imply that a person could identify his own feelings, so this is how their test was set up.

Then they go into considerable detail about how each of the four branches of their test works. (Each branch gives it's own score in their tests and then there is a composite score.) The four branches are: Perception of Emotion; Emotional Facilitation; Understanding Emotion; Managing Emotion. These are described in more detail within the paper.

They move on to a quick review of what it takes for something to be considered an intelligence, saying:

For an intelligence to be considered a standard intelligence, it must meet certain criteria. It must be reliable, of course. Beyond that, tasks that are believed to measure the intelligence must be correlated with one another. In addition, the candidate for an intelligence must be related to, but also independent of, other existing intelligences. Finally, the intelligence must develop with age.

On the topic of reliability, they state:

The four MEIS "branch scores" (i.e., Perception, Facilitation, Understanding, and Management) had coefficient alphas ranging from .81 to .96, with a full scale internal consistency of .96. The initial, research version of the MSCEIT had branch score alphas from a = .59 to .87 (based on 277 participants).

Next, the authors state that "Factor analyses indicate that emotional intelligence can be represented as a two-level hierarchy. At the top of the hierarchy is an overall emotional intelligence factor that represents a fairly cohesive group of skills." (It is not clear to me what the bottom level of this hierarchy is.)

On the correlation to traditional forms of intelligence, the authors state that "The MEIS is somewhat related to -- but still reasonably independent of -- verbal intelligence." They add that it had a lower correlation to measures of spatial intelligence so they conclude "Such findings indicate that emotional intelligence may be related to other specific intelligences to varying degrees. These correlations indicate that the MEIS measures different things than do these other intelligence tests, although there is some relationship between them."

As far as development with age, the authors tell us that adults do indeed score higher than adolescents.

Next the paper moves to the question of what emotional intelligence predicts, or what it is correlated to.

(to be continued)

See references used by Mayer et al in this paper


moved to http://eqi.org/payne.htm


Designing Instruction for Emotional Intelligence, (2000) by Richard Goldsworthy, in Educational Technology, Vol 40, #5 (September/October 2000), p. 43

From the first paragraph of the article it seems Goldsworthy is largely following Goleman's corporate definition of emotional intelligence. Goldsworthy's first references in fact are to corporate models, not educational settings. He talks about the importance of "soft skills" in corporate training, then lists basically the same things that Goleman markets as EI. (Thus I feel skeptical as I enter the article.)

Then he mentions some research on the importance of including social skills in education. He says "instructional and curricular designers recognize" recognize that learning is "socially contextualized."

He says there is a heightened awareness of this now in both business education. He says he instructional design (ID) field "faces the challenge of creating effective instruction" which incorporates social learning. He mentions the use of collaborative and cooperative learning activities.

(So far the author is not telling us much new or helpful, but I am hoping it gets better)

Then he says he is going to present a framework for what he refers to as "socioemotional learning." (Note the big words these guys come up with- I will just abbreviate it SL.)

Next he presents us with some background of this idea of SL from the standpoint of the ID field. He gives us some citations which I won't take time to copy here since if you are interested you can dig up the article. He points out that most ID books give only a weak emphasis on emotions. He says B.F. Skinner actually talked more about emotions (along with self-control and motivation) in his 1962 book The Technology of Teaching.

He says probably the most extensive work with emotions is in Martin and Briggs 1986) book (see below). Of course this was long before the term EI was popularized by Goleman or researched by Mayer and Salovey. Goldsworthy says basically that Martin and Briggs did a good job of discussing the importance of merging the (what I will call) IQ/EQ issues but that the two are still treated quite separately and little has actually changed in schools. He calls the book an "excellent resource."

In the next paragraph he uses a lot of big words to say that emotions have basically been seen as a necessary evil when it comes to teaching. (He also mentions Salovey and Mayer for the first time, while he cited Goleman in the opening paragraph.)

He next mentions some other authors who have stressed the importance of emotions: Dewey, Howard Gardner and Joseph LeDoux. He cites a book he likes by Gould (see below) which compares emotional and intellectual development, saying, apparently that there is more room for emotional growth over a person's life. (This seems to be echoing Goleman's claim that your EI can be raised more than your IQ)

Next he cites one of Goleman's definitions of EI and then proceeds to talk about EI as if it were the same as "social competence." (This is one of the big problems I have with most people who write about "EI.")

Next he presents his "framework" of EI. He says he is using "as part of an effort to review work in our field that addresses social competence..."

(Again he refers to "social competence" as if it is simply another term for emotional intelligence. I wonder though if a person with highly developed emotional intelligence might actually be a bit of a social non-conformist. Many authors, Goleman in particular seem to believe that a person with high EI is also a good "citizen" and has a good "character." Mayer and Salovey, though, don't seem suggest this or make the assumption that EI, character and good citizenship are synonymous.)

In his framework he, like Goleman, talks about what is "appropriate." He also throws in other stuff like "eye contact." I don't know where he got his framework and he doesn't give a citation, but it mostly sounds Golemanesque. He continues to talk about social skills and social competencies. The goals of his idea of IE seem to be not only facilitating academic learning, but teaching acceptable or "appropriate" behaviors. In fact, like many others, he seems to devalue individual feelings and the individual in general. For example he says, "...the social act of working in a group is the heart and soul of learning." (p. 45) Note how he use the word "act" - ie behavior. I think what he is saying indirectly is that children need to learn how to conform to group norms eventually so they might as well begin it in school.

At another point he says "people need to learn to perform specific, target social skills." (p. 45)

Since the magazine emphasizes technology he talks about some ways computers can be used, but there I didn't get much from this part of the article. Specifically he talks about some computer programs which supposedly help children who have been labeled as ADHD.

In the final paragraph of the article, which he titles "A Call to Arms" he tries to sound persuasive was he weakly tells us what we "must" do, again using a bunch of fancy words like "formative design" and "situated assessment."

It seems that the more articles I read by academics, the less I am inclined to recommend higher education to a young person, especially one who is sensitive and emotional. I am starting to believe a university education may be the "kiss of death" when it comes to EQ, as I define it.

Selected references

Gould, S. J. (1996) The mismeasure of man. New York:W.W. Norton

Healy, J. M. (1999) Failure to connect. New York: Touchstone

Martin, B.L and Brigss, L.J. (1986) The affective and cognitive domains: Integration for instruction and research. Englewood Cliffs: Educational Technology Publications

LeDoux, J. (1996) The emotional brain. New York: Simon and Schuster