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  • Level: GCSE
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Emotional Intelligence

Extracts from this document...


Nilou Huff


Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence can help or hinder the pursuit of knowledge in various ways.  Clearly, there are two sides to this argument, since there are attributes of both sides that could be defended.  However, this essay will determine the different ways emotional intelligence helps and hinders the pursuit of knowledge.  Since this is a very broad topic, for argument purposes, Daniel Goleman’s definition of emotional intelligence shall be used.  Goleman claims five major components to emotional intelligence:  1) knowing one’s feelings and using them to make good decisions, 2) the ability to manage distressing moods and control impulses, 3) being motivated and remaining hopeful and optimistic during setbacks and working toward goals 4) knowing what people around oneself are feeling, and 5) getting along well with other people, managing emotions in relationships and persuading or leading others (Goleman, 62).  Thus, the emotional quotient measures self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills.

(((What is Emotion?  The term emotion has been derived from the Latin 'emover', which may be translated to move, to excite or to agitate.  Today, the term emotion is used as an umbrella to any subjective experience.  One uses the term to express love, hate, attraction, aggression, or any other such feelings.  Sorrow and joy, disappointment and love, dismay and hope are the feelings experienced in the course of day or week.  Without such feelings, life would be quite plain and dull.  Pleasant moments are remembered enjoyably.

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According to Hallam, shortly after college, the scene changes dramatically.  While IQ and college success play a major role in obtaining initial employment upon graduation, the next step is quite unexpected to many of the “best and brightest” people.  IQ, one’s choice of college, one’s choice of major, or one’s GPA no longer seem to be the most important issues.  New employees are often assigned to teams and have to learn how to work with others of varying levels of intelligence, experience, and age (Hallem, 4).  Therefore, if Kyle doesn’t have high emotional intelligence, he may be hindered in finding a job and the pursuit of knowledge that comes along with that job.  Or, he may find a job where everyone has a reasonable IQ level, yet he may suffer from his emotional intelligence deficiency and not be able to cooperate and learn with his co-workers.      

Goleman’s studies show a relationship between emotional skills and academic success with children (Goleman, 96).  For example, skills such as being able to resist impulsivity, or to delay gratification in pursuit of a long-term goal, are helpful in educational studies.  Based on Goleman’s “marshmallow” study at Stanford, Goleman concludes that kids who are emotionally stable, score higher on their SAT’s.  This example shows that high emotional intelligence helps students in the pursuit of knowledge, and low emotional intelligence hinders the pursuit of knowledge.      

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In conclusion, although an intelligent person with a high IQ and low EQ can still pursue knowledge as Albert Einstein did, it is most likely easier to pursue knowledge with a high EQ in today’s society.  Communication and people skills are vital and help in the pursuit of knowledge as Hallam argues.  Perhaps, Einstein would have been more successful in discovering the theory of relativity.  Or maybe, if he had a higher emotional quotient and worked with more people, he may have been pushed to further extremes and created additional theories.  Goleman’s marshmallow study showed that high emotional intelligence was an indicator for higher SAT scores.  Hallam’s experience illustrated that low emotional intelligence meant not getting a position in the work force despite and thus hindering the pursuit of knowledge.  Therefore, emotional intelligence,comprised of self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills, may help or hinder the pursuit of knowledge.


1.  O’Neil, John.  “On Emotional Intelligence: A Conversation with Daniel Goleman”.          Volume 54, Number1 September 1996.          http://www.ascd.org/readingroom/edlead/9609/oneil.html.  

2.  Goleman, Daniel.  Emotional Intelligence.  New York:  1995.  

3.  "Einstein, Albert," Microsoft® Encarta® Encyclopedia 2000. © 1993-1999 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.


EQ Institute

The Emotional Intelligence Research Consortium

American Society of Training and Development -
Interview with Daniel Goleman, OCT 1998

Human Resource Management Trends and Issues:  
Emotional Intelligence (EI) in the Workplace

James Kierstead (1)

Research Directorate
Policy, Research and Communications Branch

Public Service Commission of Canada


Steven Stein

...read more.

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