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Interpersonal Competence, Social Intelligence, and General Ability

Stricker, Lawrence J.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Report
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Ability Identification, College Students, Factor Analysis, Interpersonal Competence, Social Behavior, Test Validity, Videotape


The goal of this study was to appraise the construct validity of a videotape- based situational test, the Interpersonal Competence Instrument (ICI), specifically its convergent validity with regard to other measures of social intelligence as well as its discriminant validity with respect to indexes of general ability. The ICI was administered to college students (fraternity and sorority members, and dormitory residents) along with a battery of other devices: self-rating, peer rating, and inventory measures of social intelligence and general ability; objective tests of major components of social intelligence and general ability; and control measures. Five factors emerged in a factor analysis of the measures: general ability, age, sex, halo, and distance to the video receiver. The ICI Judgments—Accuracy score defined the general ability factor and had a borderline loading on the age factor; the ICI Replies—Effectiveness score did not appear on any factor. The Judgments— Accuracy score seems to be tapping general ability to some extent, whereas what the Replies—Effectiveness score is assessing cannot be determined at all. (45pp.)

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