The psychometric properties of an emotional intelligence measure within a nursing environment
Van der Merwe, Shani
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Nurses' working environment, together with their patient relationships, can elicit emotions which they will need to manage in order to perform successfully in their daily work activities. It is for this reason that it is crucial that sound emotional intelligence measures should be developed which hospitals can utilise to identify emotionally intelligent individuals for emotionally laden jobs or even to identify their developmental needs within the area of emotional intelligence. The objective of this study was to investigate the psychometric properties of the Emotional Intelligence Scale (EIS) developed by Schutte and colleagues in 1998 within a nursing environment. A convenience random sample of 511 nurses was taken from hospitals located in the areas of Klerksdorp, Potchefstroom, Krugersdorp, Johannesburg and Pretoria. The EIS was used as a measuring instrument. Cronbach alpha coefficients, Pearson-product correlation coefficients and MANOVAS were used to analyse the data. The results showed a 5-factor solution for the EIS, which explained 50,04% of the total variance. All of the five dimensions had adequate internal consistencies, except for the Negative Emotions dimension. Lastly, group differences were identified between personnel area and emotional intelligence, as well as between race and emotional intelligence levels. Recommendations were made for future research.