Exploring an Emotional Intelligence Model With Psychiatric Mental Health Nurses

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BACKGROUND: A lack of emotional skills may affect a nurse’s personal well-being and have negative effects on patient outcomes. OBJECTIVE: To compare psychiatric-mental health nurses’ (PMHN) scores on the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT) to a normed population and compare the emotional intelligence (EI) scores of PMHNs using two tools, MSCEIT and Self-Rated Emotional Intelligence Scale (SREIS). DESIGN: Comparative descriptive and correlational study. RESULTS: PMHNs in the study had a higher mean EI compared with that of 5,000 participants in the normed MSCEIT sample. Significant weak correlations were seen between the perceiving and understanding emotion branches of the MSCEIT and SREIS. CONCLUSION: The current study added data about a sample of PMHN’s EI levels in the United States, which may encourage dialog about EI among PMHNs. Future research is needed to examine the relationship between self-report EI tools (e.g., SREIS) and performance tools (e.g., MSCEIT) to determine if they are measuring the same construct.

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