Controlling for response bias in the administration of the online measures

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CHAPTER 2 THE THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK UNDERLYING EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE AND COGNITIVE THINKING STYLES

Research findings are frequently reported suggesting that El is a distinct construct that can be reliably measured (Mayer et al., 1999; Petrides, & Furnham, 2003; Brackett & Mayer, 2003; Saklofske et al.,2003) yet critical questions remain about the concept, theory and measurement of El. There is still insufficient research that addresses the distinction between trait and ability El, and researchers do not adequately conceptualise the distinct space between intelligence and personality in which these constructs operate. If trait and ability El measure two distinct constructs, the differences between the two theories need to be clarified, and the domains they address should be distinguished clearly.The roots of the El model can be traced back to the theory of social intelligence, developed by E.L.Thorndike in 1920 and Gardner’s (1983; 1993) interpersonal and intrapersonal intelligences. The abundance with which El models and methodology were released after the first formal definition of the term El by Salovey and Mayer in 1990, led to a haphazard development of the construct and numerous conflicting findings (Petrides et al., 2004b). Petrides et al., (2004b) argue that the lack of coherence and ambiguity stems from a failure to take into account the fundamental difference between self-report measurement and measurement using behavioural performance, and to consider the implications of these types of measurements in demarcating the boundaries of El. Self-report measurement results in the operationalisation of a construct as a personality trait whereas behavioural or maximum-performance measurement would lead to the operationalisation of a construct as a cognitive ability (Furnham, 2006).Furnham (2006) contends therefore, that it is important to realise that these are two different constructs because the procedures used in the operational definitions of trait EI and ability EI are fundamentally different, even though the theoretical domains on which the definitions are based may overlap. A concern continually expressed by a number of researchers is that training and measurement tools are being
developed and sold in educational, social and workplace contexts before satisfactory definitions, reliability and validity of the underlying models have been recorded (Ashkanasy & Daus, 2005; Landy 2005). Petrides and Furnham (2000a) first conceptualised the distinction between trait and ability El, and although there has been some research done on establishing the structure of El in this regard (Petrides & Furnham, 2001; Petrides et al., 2004b), additional research studies are required that use both a measure of trait El and a measure of ability El, to determine how these measures overlap with instruments that have previously been shown to share theoretical space with one or both of these instruments. Petrides and Furnham consider ability and trait El to be two conceptually different theories which measure distinct constructs, and predict very different facets of life. By obtaining an increased understanding of the relationship between measures of ability El and trait El, and the potential for shared variance in predicting life space criteria such as cognitive thinking styles, additional evidence can be gathered which will demonstrate either the distinctiveness or interrelationship between these two constructs.The purpose of the present study is to explore how the impact of the self-report versus ability procedures by which EI is measured impacts on the psychometric and theoretical properties of the El construct. Trait EI is hypothesised to be orthogonal to ability EI, and should therefore be unrelated to proxies of cognitive ability (Furnham, 2006). As a result, trait EI is considered to be oblique to personality constructs as it is partially determined by several personality dimensions and therefore lies at the lower level of personality hierarchies (Petrides, Pita, & Kokkinaki, 2007b). Ability EI, however, is expected to be related to general intelligence as well as specific personality dimensions that reflect basic differences in human emotionality such as neuroticism (Furnham, 2006), as ability EI concerns emotion-related cognitive abilities measured via performance-based tests (Petrides et al., 2007b). This chapter outlines the theoretical basis for the distinction between trait and ability EI within the context of intelligence research. The chapter also provides an overview of the nature and theoretical properties of cognitive thinking styles.

A BROADER VIEW OF INTELLIGENCE

The historical development and theoretical conceptualisation of intelligence

Speculation about the relationship between thought and emotion is an age old topic. Classical theory from the 1900’s focused on the argument that thought and emotions are relatively separate. In this era intelligence theory emerged, and intelligence tests were conceptualised and developed. From 1970 onwards however, more and more theorists began to research the interrelationship between intelligence and emotion, and the field of cognition and affect was developed (Sternberg, 1998).Intelligence has been conceptualised in a number of different ways, and there is as yet little consensus on a general definition of intelligence. Intelligence is considered to be the reason for individual differences in the ability to understand complex ideas, to adapt effectively to the environment, to learn from experience, to engage in various forms of reasoning and to overcome obstacles using thought (Neisser, Boodoo, Bouchard, Boykin, Brody, Ceci, Halpern, Loehlin, Perloff, Sternberg, Urbina, 1996). Theorists are generally in agreement that intelligence consists of a hierarchy of abilities needed to solve abstract reasoning problems (Brody, 2000), and is referred to by a number of terms including cognitive ability,intelligence, general mental ability (GMA) and general intelligence (g). In general, cognitive ability has been reported to be the best predictor of overall performance and task performance across different careers as well as a number of important life outcomes such as years of education, social status and occupational income (Neisser et al., 1996).The dominant theory of intelligence is the psychometric approach, which is the theory of intelligence that has been chiefly researched as well as used most widely in practical settings (Neisser et al., 1996). Tests to measure Intelligence Quotient (I.Q) were developed during the initial part of the 20th century as one of the primary measures of intelligence. Since the development of the first test of intelligence by French psychologist, Alfred Binet, many tests have been developed to measure some aspect of individual differences in cognitive functioning (Roberts et al., 2001). Spearman argued for the existence of a primary general factor, g, that was evident in the positive nature of the correlations measured across a number ability factors (Brody, 2006). Spearman maintained that there was a structure to intelligence, and that the structure could be captured in a single number (Hubey, 2002). The foundation for existence of the g construct is based on research findings that performance on any one test of cognitive ability is positively related to performance on any other test of ability. The psychometric approach is therefore based on the occurrence of a common element that is present in all tests of cognitive ability (Brody, 2006) that were not specifically designed to measure intelligence, but rather closely related constructs such as scholastic aptitude, school achievement and specific abilities that were developed primarily for selection purposes (Neisser et al., 1996). The psychometric approach is seen as the most influential yet controversial of all the theories of intelligence. A number of contemporary researchers believe that general intelligence does not explain all of the relationships among different abilities and that g is an unstable construct whose composition varies with the items in a test battery (Brody, 2006). Additional criticism levied against the general psychometric measures of intelligence relates to the lack of consideration for situational factors, such as environment or cultural setting when predicting achievement. One of the predominant concerns arises from group differences reported in general intelligence mean scores especially across different ethnic groups (Van Rooy, Dilchert, Viswesvaran, & Ones, 2006).

CHAPTER 1: GENERAL OVERVIEW
1.1. INTRODUCTION
1.1.1. Personality, intelligence and emotion
1.2. PROBLEM STATEMENT AND RESEARCH AIMS 
1.2.1. Distinguishing emotional intelligence as a trait from emotional intelligence as an ability
1.2.2. Relations between emotional intelligence and thinking styles
1.2.3. The potential influence of emotional intelligence and thinking styles on job satisfaction within the workplace
1.3. MOTIVATION FOR CONDUCTING THE STUDY 
1.4. OUTLINE OF CHAPTERS 
1.5. CHAPTER SUMMARY
CHAPTER 2: THE THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK UNDERLYING EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE AND COGNITIVE THINKING STYLES
2.1. A BROADER VIEW OF INTELLIGENCE
2.1.1 The historical development and theoretical conceptualisation of intelligence
2.1.2 Can emotions be intelligent?
2.2. EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE 
2.2.1. Emotional intelligence as an ability
2.2.1.1. The four branches of emotional intelligence
2.2.2. Emotional intelligence as a trait
2.3. EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE AND COGNITIVE THINKING STYLES
2.3.1. The foundation of thinking styles: The theory of mental self-government
2.3.2. Explanation of the categories of thinking styles
2.3.2.1. Functions of thinking styles
2.3.2.2. Forms of thinking styles
2.3.2.3. Levels of thinking styles
2.3.2.4. Scope of thinking styles
2.3.2.5. Leanings of thinking styles
2.3.3. The properties and application of thinking styles
2.4. CHAPTER SUMMARY
CHAPTER 3: RELIABILITY AND VALIDITY ISSUES OF THE INSTRUMENTS USED TO MEASURE EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE AND COGNITIVE THINKING STYLES 
3.1. MEASURES OF EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
3.1.1. Performance based measures of emotional intelligence
3.1.1.1. Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT V2.0)
3.1.1.2. Predominant criticisms of performance based measures of emotional intelligence
3.1.2. Self-report measures of emotional intelligence
3.1.2.1. Brief overview of the Emotional Competence Inventory and Bar-On’s Emotional Quotient
3.1.2.2. The Schutte Self-Report Emotional Intelligence Test (SSREIT)
3.1.2.3. Predominant criticisms of self-report measures of emotional intelligence
3.2. A CRITICAL EVALUATION OF THE RELIABILITY AND VALIDITY OF EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE AND RELATED INSTRUMENTS
3.2.1. Reliability of competing measures of emotional intelligence
3.2.1.1. Reliability of ability EI measures: the MEIS and the MSCEIT
3.2.1.2. Reliability of trait EI measures: the EQ-I, ECI and the SSREIT.
3.2.2. Validity concerns that relate to the measurement of emotional intelligence
3.2.2.1. The content validity of emotional intelligence measurement instruments: are these instruments sufficiently comprehensive to measure the EI domain
3.2.2.2. The construct validity of emotional intelligence and the factor structure of the MSCEIT and the SSREIT
3.2.2.3. The discriminate and convergent validity of emotional intelligence: the relationship between emotional intelligence, intelligence and personality
3.2.2.4. Implications of group differences in emotional intelligence scores
3.2.2.5. The predictive validity of emotional intelligence: El in applied settings
3.3. COMPARABILITY OF EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE MEASURES AND THE POTENTIAL FOR SEPARATING THE CONSTRUCTS
3.4. A REVIEW OF THE RELIABILITY AND VALIDITY OF THE THINKING STYLES INVENTORY
3.4.1. Reliability of the Thinking Styles Inventory
3.4.2. Validity of the Thinking Styles Inventory
3.4.2.1. Factor structure of the Thinking Styles Inventory and convergence with theoretically similar constructs
3.4.2.2. Theoretically expected differences between groups
3.4.2.3. The predictive validity of the Thinking Styles Inventory
3.5. RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
3.5.1. Construct validity of the trait emotional intelligence vs. ability emotional intelligence distinction
3.5.2. Predicative validity of trait emotional intelligence vs. ability emotional intelligence in the occupational environment
3.6. CHAPTER SUMMARY
CHAPTER 4: METHODOLOGY
4.1. RESEARCH DESIGN
4.2. SAMPLE SELECTION
4.3. RESEARCH INSTRUMENTS 
4.3.1. Description and scoring of the MSCEIT
4.3.2. Description and scoring of the SSREIT
4.3.3. Description and scoring of the TSI
4.3.4. Measures of job satisfaction
4.3.5. Socio-demographic and occupational variables
4.4. DATA COLLECTION PROCEDURE
4.4.1. Controlling for response bias in the administration of the online measures
4.5. DATA ANALYSIS PROCEDURES
4.5.1. Reliability and validity of the measurement instruments
4.5.1.1. The factorial validity of the SSREIT
4.5.1.2. The factorial validity of the MSCEIT
4.5.1.3. Reliability of the measurement instruments
4.5.1.4. The validity of the categorisation of the thinking styles subscales into five dimensions and three broad types
4.5.2. Assessment of the emotional intelligence and thinking styles of the sample respondents
4.5.2.1. Emotional intelligence and thinking styles profile of the sample and comparison to norms
4.5.2.2. Exploring the correlations between the MSCEIT, SSREIT and the TSI
4.5.2.3. Subscale level factor analysis of the three measurement instruments
4.5.2.4. Differentiation between demographic groups
4.5.3. Predictive validity of trait versus ability EI in the occupational environment
4.5.3.1. The relationship between emotional intelligence, thinking styles and job satisfaction .
4.5.3.2. Thinking styles and cognitive climate
4.5.3.3. Emotional intelligence and job functions
4.5.3.4. The potential relationship with levels of management
4.6. CHAPTER SUMMARY
CHAPTER 5: RESEARCH FINDINGS
5.1. DEMOGRAPHIC PROFILE OF THE SAMPLE
5.1.1. Socio-demographic characteristics of the sample
5.1.2. Occupational characteristics of the sample
5.2. A CRITICAL EXAMINATION OF THE VALIDITY AND RELIABILITY OF THE MEASUREMENT INSTRUMENTS
5.2.1. Exploring the reliability and validity of the hierarchical four factor structure of the Schutte Self-Report Emotional Intelligence Test
5.2.1.1. Item-level exploratory factor analysis of the SSREIT
5.2.1.2. Item-level confirmatory factor analysis of the SSREIT
5.2.1.3. Reliability of the SSREIT
5.2.2. Establishing the reliability and nature of the factor structure of the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso
Emotional Intelligence Test
5.2.2.1. Confirmatory factor analysis of the MSCEIT
5.2.2.2. Reliability of the MSCEIT
5.2.3. The validity and reliability of the Thinking Styles Inventory and theoretical assumptions
regarding the measurement structure
5.2.3.1. Subscale reliabilities and correlations between scales
5.2.3.2. Confirmation of the categorisation of the thinking styles subscales into five dimensions and three broad types
5.3. PROFILE OF EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE AND THINKING STYLES OF RESPONDENTS
5.3.1. Employee scores on the total scale and subscales of the MSCEIT: Comparison with South African and North American MSCEIT norms
5.3.2. Respondent scores on the total scale and subscales of the SSREIT
5.3.3. Profile of employees’ preferred thinking styles
5.4. CONSTRUCT VALIDITY OF TRAIT VS. ABILITY EI: EXPLORING THE BOUNDARIES OF THE EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE CONSTRUCT IN RELATION TO THINKING STYLES
5.4.1. Correlations between emotional intelligence and thinking styles measures
5.4.2. Factorial relationships between emotional intelligence and thinking styles measures
5.4.3. Differences in emotional intelligence and thinking styles for groups with differing demographic characteristics
5.4.3.1. Age, generational differences and work experience: Does emotional intelligence change over the life span?
5.4.3.2. Gender differences: Examining the stereotype of the emotionally superior female
5.4.3.3. Ethnic differences in emotional intelligence and thinking styles
5.4.3.4. The potential influence of marital status
5.5. THE ABILITY OF TRAIT EI VERSUS ABILITY EI TO PREDICT LIFE OUTCOMES IN THE OCCUPATIONAL ENVIRONMENT
5.5.1. Criterion-related validity of emotional intelligence in predicting job satisfaction
5.5.1.1. Relationship between self-reported measures of job satisfaction
5.5.1.2. Thinking styles and job satisfaction
5.5.1.3. The influence of emotional intelligence on job satisfaction
5.5.2. Predicting cognitive climate from thinking styles
5.5.3. Differences in emotional intelligence depending on job function
5.5.4. Thinking styles, emotional intelligence and levels of management
CHAPTER 6: DISCUSSION OF RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS
6.1. SUMMARY OF THE STUDY
6.2. DISCUSSION OF THE RESULTS
6.2.1. Reliability and validity of the TSI
6.2.2. Factorial validity of the MSCEIT in comparison to the SSREIT
6.2.3. Reliability and internal consistency of the SSREIT in comparison to the MSCEIT
6.2.4. Discriminant validity of the trait versus ability EI distinction in relation to cognitive thinking styles
6.2.5. Effectiveness of trait versus ability EI in differentiating demographic characteristics
6.2.6. Evaluating the effectiveness of trait versus ability EI in predicting occupational characteristics and outcomes
6.2.6.1. Job satisfaction, thinking styles and emotional intelligence
6.2.6.2. Job function, cognitive climate and levels of management
6.3. CONCLUSION
6.3.1. Limitations and directions for future research
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An assessment of the relationship between emotional intelligence and cognitive thinking styles within the occupational environment

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