Emotional intelligence and EQ are often used as phrases for social intelligence.

Are they really the same? Would social intelligence always imply emotional intelligence and vice versa?

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    $\begingroup$ Could you please give definitions and example usages for the terms "Emotional intelligence", "EQ" and "Social Intelligence"? I'm not an expert in this field, but I feel like these terms could use some rigorous definition. $\endgroup$
    – Seanny123
    Jun 27, 2016 at 22:14

2 Answers 2


These terms are defined by the underlying theory of Intelligence. For example:

  1. Social Intelligence (SI) comes from a definition by Edward Thorndike in 1920.
  2. Emotional Intelligence (EI) (or EQ - Q=Quota) first appeared in a 1964 paper by Michael Beldoch, later by Goleman.
  3. Then there is Interpersonal & Intrapersonal Intelligences from Howard Gardner's Multiple Intelligence theory.

Generally speaking, they pertain to similar concepts with some overlap from theory to theory. When speaking of this type of intelligence it is often recommended to cite the theory the discussion is based on.


Emotional Intelligence encompases Social Intelligence as you can see below: - Self-Awareness, - Self-Management, - Social Awareness - Relationship Management.


  • $\begingroup$ Could you provide a summary of the website you linked to and an APA reference to the literature the website used. If the link goes dead, both the content and the used literature will be inaccessible, making the answer un-usable $\endgroup$ Apr 28, 2017 at 11:47
  • $\begingroup$ I won't trust a commercial article over research articles. Early research articles show that psychologists used to consider emotional intelligence a subset of social intelligence. But these days they prefer to combine the two types into one called ESI. Sources: sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0160289693900103 ; academia.edu/download/34445458/… ; academic.oup.com/brain/article/126/8/1790/308022/… $\endgroup$
    – Spero
    Apr 28, 2017 at 16:57
  • $\begingroup$ Also, I made a mistake of not reading your link before commenting, and that site does not appear to be wrong. They are using the ESI model. $\endgroup$
    – Spero
    Apr 28, 2017 at 17:05

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