Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Advisor/Committee Chair

Stephanie Wemm

Committee Member

Edelgard Wulfert


Emotional intelligence is conceptualized as encompassing perception, utilization, and management of emotion. Research suggests that the managing one’s own emotions subscale (MOE) may be particularly relevant to risky behaviors such as substance use and gambling. The present study examined the effects of emotional intelligence and mood manipulation on risk taking. Participants were randomly assigned to a positive, negative, or neutral mood condition. Baseline measures of mood state were obtained by the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS), followed by self-report questionnaires. Participants were then presented with a brief film clip for the mood manipulation. Immediately thereafter, a second PANAS was completed, followed by the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) to simulate risk taking, and a third PANAS. A mixed model repeated measures analysis indicated that the mood induction was effective. Moderation analyses revealed that under high levels of negative affect change, MOE moderates the relationship between change in negative affect and advantageous selections on the IGT. The results indicate that MOE may play a prominent role in reducing risk taking when in a negative mood. This study has implications for addiction, as individuals with higher emotional intelligence may engage in less risk taking when in a negative mood, whereas individuals with lower emotional intelligence may be prone to risky behaviors.

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Psychology Commons