The influence of emotional intelligence on academic achievement in UK university students

Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education (Impact Factor: 0.84). 06/2011; 2011(1). DOI: 10.1080/02602938.2011.583981


Previous research has found relationships between higher levels of emotional intelligence (EI) and academic success in both adolescents and adults. This study examines the relationship between overall EI and specific EI competencies in 135 undergraduate psychology students in the UK. EI was measured at the start of a psychology degree course using the Emotional Competence Inventory-University Edition (ECI-U II). Performance was assessed using retention statistics and students’ final average percentage mark (APM) at the end of their degree course. Results showed that there were no differences in overall EI or specific EI competencies in those students who graduated compared to those who failed to graduate. Whilst global EI did not significantly predict final APM, specific EI competencies (conscientiousness, adaptability, empathy, organisational awareness, and building bonds) significantly predicted APM after controlling for gender. Recommendations for the implementation of EI training in higher education institutions are considered.

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