​​​What is more beneficial in life; a high EQ or IQ?

This question is based on the assumption that only your EQ or IQ is high with the other being average or below this average. ‘in life’ means all aspects both social and individual.


There is no such thing as EQ. Let me repeat that: “There is NO SUCH THING AS EQ.” The idea was popularized by a journalist, Daniel Goleman, not a psychologist. You can’t just invent a trait. You have to define it and measure it and distinguish it from other traits and use it to predict the important ways that people vary.

不存在情商这种东西。我再说一遍:“不存在情商这种东西。”是一位名为Daniel Goleman的记者,而不是心理学家,让情商的概念广为人知。你不能凭空发明一种特质。你必须要给出定义,进行度量,使之区别于其它特质,并用来预测众人如何因此特质的不同而表现得不一样。

EQ is not a psychometrically valid concept. Insofar as it is anything (which it isn’t) it’s the Big Five trait agreeableness, although this depends, as it shouldn’t, on which EQ measure is being used (they should all measure THE SAME THING). Agreeable people are compassionate and polite, but they can also be pushovers. Disagreeable people, on average (if they aren’t too disagreeable) make better managers, because they are straightforward, don’t avoid conflict and cannot be easily manipulated.


Let me say it again: THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS EQ. Scientifically, it’s a fraudulent concept, a fad, a convenient band-wagon, a corporate marketing scheme. (Here’s an early critique by Davies, M., Stankov, L. and Roberts, D. Emotional intelligence: in search of an elusive construct. – PubMed – NCBI; Here’s a conclusion reached by Harms and Crede, in an excellent article — comprehensive and well thought-through (2010): “Our searches of the literature revealed only six articles in which the authors either explicitly examined the incremental validity of EI scores over measures of both cognitive ability and Big Five personality traits in predicting either academic or work performance, or presented data in a manner that allowed examination of this issue.

我再说一遍:情商这东西不存在。从科学上讲,这是一个欺骗性概念,一股时尚风潮,一阵不加思考的跟风起哄,一种公司的营销行为。(这里有Davies, M.、 Stankov, L. 和 Roberts, D早前的评论。情商:对模糊概念的找寻——PubMed-NCBI)这是Harms和Crede在《全面而令人深思》(2010)这篇出色文章中得出的结论:“我们对文献的调查发现,其中只有六篇文献的作者明确检验了情商分数(该分数是通过测量认知能力和五大人格特质来预测学术或工作表现而得出)的增量有效性,抑或是将数据按允许检验的方式呈现。

Not one of these six articles (Barchard,2003; Newsome, Day, & Catano, 2000;O’Connor & Little, 2003; Rode, Arthaud-Day, Mooney, Near, & Baldwin, 2008;Rode et al., 2007; Rossen & Kranzler,2009) showed a significant contribution for EI in the prediction of performance after controlling for both cognitive ability and the Big Five… For correlations involving the overall EI construct, EI explained almost no incremental variance in performance ([change in prediction] = .00. Findings were identical when considering only cases involving an ability-based measure of IE….” See: http://snip.ly/7kc45

在控制认知水平和五大人格特质这两组变量后,这六篇文章中(Barchard, 2003; Newsome, Day, & Catano, 2000;O’Connor & Little, 2003; Rode, Arthaud-Day, Mooney, Near, & Baldwin, 2008;Rode et al., 2007; Rossen & Kranzler,2009)没有一篇表明情商对预测个人表现上有显著贡献。对于涉及总体情商概念的相关性,情商无法解释个人表现上的渐进方差([预测的变化]= .00)。“仅当考虑基于能力的情商测量的案例时,结果才一致。”详见:http://snip.ly/7kc45

Harms and Crede also comment: “…proofs of validity [for EI[ seem to come from measuring constructs that have existed for a long time and are simply being relabeled and recategorized. For example, one of the proposed measures of ESC, the Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire (Mikolajczak, Luminet, Leroy, & Roy,2007), makes use of measures of assertiveness, social competence, self-confidence, stress management, and impulsivity among other things. Most, if not all, of these constructs are firmly embedded in and well-accounted for by well-designed measures of personality traits such as the Hogan Personality Inventory (Hogan & Hogan, 1992)and the Multidimensional Personality Questionnaire (Tellegen & Waller, 2008). The substantial relationships observed between these ESC and trait-based EI measures, and personality inventories, bears this out. It therefore appears that the predictive validity of ESC or EI measures may be accounted for in large part by the degree to which they assess subfacets of higher-order traits relevant to the outcomes being predicted. For example, Cherniss (2010) relates that two studies of self-discipline showed them to be significant predictors of academic performance and then criticizes Landy (2005) for not taking them into account in a review of studies of ‘‘social intelligence.’’ Given that self-control (or impulse control)is widely regarded as a major subfacet of conscientiousness (Roberts, Chernyshenko,Stark, & Goldberg, 2005) and that numerous studies have linked Conscientiousness with academic performance, that there is a link between a facet of Conscientiousness and academic performance is hardly news.”

Harms和Crede还评论道:“情商有效性的证据似乎来自对存在已久概念的测量,然后简单地重贴标签,重新归类。例如,作为ESC (Emotional and Social Competencies,即情绪与社交能力)推荐的测量方法之一,情商特质问卷(Mikolajczak, Luminet, Leroy, & Roy,2007)测量了魄力、社交能力、自信、压力管理能力,还有冲动性。这些概念中的大部分,如果不是全部的话,都植入和应用在对人格特质测量的精心设计之中,比如Hogen人格调查表(Hogan & Hogan, 1992)和多维性格问卷(Tellegen & Waller, 2008)。这些情绪与社交能力(ESC)和基于特质的情商测试与人格量表之间的实质关系证明了这点。因此看来,ESC或情商测试的预测之所以可靠主要是因为它们评估的对象是某些高级特质的某一方面,而这些高级特质与被预测结果相关联。例如,Cherniss(2010)说有关自律的两个研究表明它们可以很好的预测学术表现,并批评Landy(2005)在综述“社交智力”中未考虑这两个研究。鉴于自控(或冲动控制)被广泛认为是尽责性的重要子集(Roberts, Chernyshenko,Stark, & Goldberg, 2005),而且众多研究已经将尽责性与学术表现联系起来,所以认为尽责性的某一方面与学术表现有联系实在不是什么新闻。”

IQ is a different story. It is the most well-validated concept in the social sciences, bar none. It is an excellent predictor of academic performance, creativity, ability to abstract, processing speed, learning ability and general life success.


There are other traits that are important to general success, including conscientiousness, which is an excellent predictor of grades, managerial and administrative ability, and life outcomes, on the conservative side.


It should also be noted that IQ is five or more times as powerful a predictor as even good personality trait predictors such as conscientiousness. The true relationship between grades, for example, and IQ might be as high as r = .50 or even .60 (accounting for 25-36% of the variance in grades). Conscientiousness, however, probably tops out at around r = .30, and is more typically reported as r = .25 (say, 5 to 9% of the variance in grades). There is nothing that will provide you with a bigger advantage in life than a high IQ. Nothing. To repeat it: NOTHING.

还应该注意,智商的预测能力是诸如尽责性之类优秀个人品质预测能力的五倍乃至更多。比如,成绩与智商之间的真实关系可能高达r=0.50 甚至0.60(占到成绩差异的25-36%)。然而,认真负责与成绩的关系可能最多r=0.30,而更典型的报道为r=0.25(也就是说,占到成绩差异的5-9%)。生活中没有什么能比智商带给你更大的优势。没有。重复一遍:没有。

In fact, if you could choose to be born at the 95th percentile for wealth, or the 95th percentile for IQ, you would be more successful at age 40 as a consequence of the latter choice.


It might be objected that we cannot measure traits such as conscientiousness as well as we measure IQ, as we primarily rely on self or other-reports for the former. But no one has solved this problem. There are no “ability” tests for conscientiousness. I am speaking as someone who has tried to produce such tests for ten years, and failed (despite trying dozens of good ideas, with top students working on the problem). IQ is king. This is why academic psychologists almost never measure it. If you measure it along with your putatively “new” measure, IQ will kill your ambitions. For the career-minded, this is a no go zone. So people prefer to talk about multiple intelligences and EQ, and all these things that do not exist. PERIOD.




By the way, there is also no such thing as “grit,” despite what Angela Duckworth says. Grit is conscientiousness, plain and simple (although probably more the industrious side than the orderly side). All Duckworth and her compatriots did was fail to notice that they had re-invented a very well documented phenomena, that already had a name (and, when they did notice it, failed to produce the appropriate mea culpas. Not one of psychology’s brighter moments). A physicists who “re-discovered” iron and named it melignite or something equivalent would be immediately revealed as ignorant or manipulative (or, more likely, as ignorant and manipulative), and then taunted out of the field. Duckworth? She received a MacArthur Genius grant for her trouble. That’s all as reprehensible as the self-esteem craze (self-esteem, by the way, is essentially .65 Big Five trait neuroticism (low) and .35 extraversion (high), with some accurate self-assessment of general life competence thrown in, for those who are a bit more self-aware). See http://snip.ly/5smyx

顺便一提,毅力这东西也不存在,不管Angela Duckworth说过什么。毅力就是尽责性,直白简单(虽然更偏重勤勉而不是条理性)。Duckworth和他的同事未能注意到他们重新发明了一种已被详细记录和命名的现象(而且当他们注意到时,也未能承认自己的错误。这并不是一个心理学的光明时刻)。一个“重新发现”了铁并命名为“melignite”或者做了类似事情的物理学家会很快被认为无知或篡改(或更可能的是,无知且篡改),然后被嘲笑并被逐出学界。Duckworth呢?她反而获得了麦克阿瑟天才奖。这跟对自尊的狂热一样都值得谴责(顺便一说,对于那些比较自觉的人,自尊本质上就是65%的五大人格特质中的神经质(较弱)和35%的外向性(较高),再加上对一般生活能力的某些精确的自我评估)。详见 http://snip.ly/5smyx

By the way, in case I haven’t made myself clear: THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS EQ. OR GRIT. OR “SELF-ESTEEM.”


It’s crooked psychology. Reminiscent of all the recent upheaval in the social psychology subfield: Final Report: Stapel Affair Points to Bigger Problems in Social Psychology.



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