Let's talk about feelings : emotional intelligence and aggression predict juvenile offense
Hannah Jean Moskat
Katelyn Marie Sorenson
May 7, 2012
Department or Program
Emotional intelligence (EI) is a concept based on understanding one’s own emotions and the emotions of others. Because aggression is often categorized by hurtful and destructive behavior towards others, it seems to oppose the empathetic nature of EI. In this study, we sought to test this relationship directly in the context of juvenile delinquency. We predicted that EI would be negatively correlated with aggression, and also relate to sex and offense type. Participants were ten detained youth at the Walla Walla Juvenile Justice Center and were tested using the Bar-On EQI: YV (S) and the Aggression Questionnaire to measure their emotional intelligence and aggression levels . We found that lower emotional intelligence levels were correlated with higher aggression scores, and that participants scored the highest in physical aggression. Findings are discussed in terms of teaching EI in rehabilitation programs for youth offenders.