Cognitive Ability, Emotional Intelligence, and Their Impact on Academic Performance


  • Orlando M. Barreiro


Studies have modeled academic performance with variables such as motivation, personality, and learning strategies. No previous study, however, has considered the impact of emotional intelligence (EI), in addition to cognitive ability, on one model of academic performance. The research questions examined the relationship between EI and academic performance and cognitive ability and academic performance. The theoretical framework for this study was Mayer, Salovey, and Caruso’s theory of emotional intelligence. Linear regression and correlation analyses were utilized to examine EI and cognitive ability to academic performance among a sample of 160 college students who completed the Self Report Emotional Intelligence Test (SSEIT) survey. Results demonstrated that cognitive ability is a significant predictor of academic performance, a finding that supports the results of previous studies. The resulting model provides teachers and students with a better understanding of the relationship between one’s EI and one’s ability to perform academically.