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Lack of association between emotional intelligence and faculty ratings.


Holmboe ES, Hess BJ, Conforti L. — American Board of Internal Medicine

Kogan JR. — University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

Presented: 14th Ottawa Conference, May 2010

Background: Emotion is believed to affect how faculty assess resident clinical performance. While measures of emotional intelligence (EI) have been associated with better clinical performance, few studies have investigated how EI affects the rating of residents' clinical skills via direct observation.

Summary of Work: Forty-four faculty from 13 internal medicine programs completed the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT). Using an ABIM Mini-CEX, faculty rated videos of four unique scripted patient encounters, including one resident breaking bad news and another resident with brusque interpersonal skills. Four MSCEIT branch scores (perceiving, using, understanding and managing emotions) were correlated with faculty ratings on the seven domains of the Mini-CEX (med interview, physical exam, humanism, clinical judgment, counseling, organization and overall competence).

Summary of Results: None of the four MSCEIT scores correlated with any of the Mini-CEX ratings (r range = - .14 to .21, all ps > .05).

Conclusions: In a controlled setting, a validated measure of EI showed no relationship to faculty rating behavior on the Mini-CEX, raising further questions about the role and effect of emotional intelligence in faculty assessment of trainees.

Take-Home Message: Emotional intelligence did not appear to have a major impact on faculty assessment in this controlled study.

For more information about this presentation, please contact Research@abim.org.