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Selective attention to emotional stimuli: What IQ and Openness do, and emotional intelligence does not
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We examined how general intelligence, personality, and emotional intelligence-measured as an ability using the MSCEIT-predicted performance on a selective-attention task requiring participants to ignore distracting emotion information. We used a visual prime in which participants saw a pair of faces depicting emotions; their task was to focus on one of the faces (the target) while ignoring the other (the distractor). Next, participants categorized a string of letters (word or nonword), which was either congruent to the target or the distractor. The speed of response to categorizing the string was recorded. Given the emotional nature of the stimuli and the emotional information processing involved in the task, we were surprised to see that none of the MSCEIT branches predicted performance. However, general intelligence and openness to experience reduced response time.
Selective attention, Emotional intelligence, Intelligence, Personality, MSCEIT, Emotion processes, Lexical decision task, Inhibition
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