Investigating social phobia and its relationship with emotional intelligence in medical students

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Professor of Psychiatry, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

2 Medicine student, Faculty of Medicine, Mashhad University of medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

3 Student in biotechnology, Tehran University, Tehran, Iran

4 Associate professor of neurology, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran


Introduction: Social phobia may interfere with academic achievements in medical students. According to the fact that individuals with social phobia have difficulty in establishing social relationships, it can be concluded that social phobia is reversely related with emotional intelligence. This research investigates the causes of social phobia in medical students and its relationship with emotional intelligence.
Materials and Methods: In this descriptive-analytical study, 244 medical students of Mashhad University of Medical Sciences who were doing basic sciences course in the academic year of 2012-2013 participated. The level of social anxiety and emotional intelligence were assessed by the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale (LSAS) questionnaire and the Schutte Self Report Emotional Intelligence Test (SSEIT). The collected data was analyzed by employing SPSS 16 and statistical tests including ANOVA, Pearson’s correlation coefficient and T-test.
Results: The mean scores of emotional intelligence and social phobia were 43.34±21.74 and 123.5±15.98 respectively. There was an inverse relationship between social phobia and emotional intelligence (P= 0.001). The mean score of emotional intelligence in women was higher than men (P=0.006). Grade Point Average (GPA) was remarkably linked to emotional intelligence (P<0.001). We also showed a negative significant relationship between social phobia and emotional intelligence in students of semesters 1, 2, 3 and 5, in students with GPA below 17, in local students, in non-local students living in dormitories (P<0.05).
Conclusion: There is a significant and inverse relationship social phobia and emotional intelligence in medical students.


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