What is more important, EQ or IQ?

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 09 October, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 09 October, 2008, 12:00am

Vincent Wong, 17

Wah Yan College, Hong Kong

IQ only measures our intelligence potential, which has no direct relationship to our present intelligence, as psychologist Robert Sternberg suggested. But even with a high IQ, you cannot succeed if you are not determined enough. You also need to be sociable and creative.

You are not alone on Earth. You need to understand the emotions of others, as well as your own, to prevent misunderstandings - this is EQ. It is rare for people to succeed in life without help. Friends, families and colleagues are key factors that affect your life. You need a high EQ to build a network of these helpful people. With a high EQ, you will be able to recover from failures and manage relationships well, making life a lot easier.

Yoon Hur, 17

German Swiss International School

EQ is more important, because a prestigious degree and lucrative job means nothing if you have no-one to share your successes with. I would rather die penniless and be mourned by a few close friends, than be remembered by the world for my business reputation. Living for personal achievement is a dead end - what do you aim for when you've already attained the best? Besides, it's easy to fake a high IQ score if you study the right material. Making genuine, lasting friendships is much more difficult, and the results are far more rewarding than a few letters after your name.

Benson Chan, 17

Wah Yan College, Hong Kong

These days, EQ - emotional intelligence - is considered very important for personal success. I'm not suggesting that IQ - intelligence quotient - is no longer useful, since you need an IQ of 100-120 to earn an advanced degree. Having a high IQ is an advantage but having EQ can make all the difference to your studies and future career.

Emotional intelligence determines our ability to manage our feelings and relationships. Good social skills are associated with high EQ levels. There is increasing evidence which shows leadership positions in companies require EQ as well as conventional qualifications. If a university student does not develop good EQ skills, they may be limiting their future potential. Some students may have received good grades in school exams, but without EQ, they will not be able to function well in higher education or the adult world.

Rachel Haslam, 17

German Swiss International School

I think both EQ and IQ should be used together for a person to achieve success in their lives. However, if I must choose, I believe EQ is slightly more important than IQ because it develops one's ability to judge and react to people around them. If one was simply intelligent, but could not get along with others, achieving success would be a huge struggle. EQ and IQ are the difference between being able to function well and being able to function well enough to succeed.