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Ability-based emotional intelligence and career adaptability: role in job-search success of university students

Shashank Mittal (Department of OB and HR, Rajagiri Business School, Kochi, India)

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning

ISSN: 2042-3896

Article publication date: 25 June 2020

Issue publication date: 27 April 2021




This study aims to investigate the specific role of the components of ability-based emotional intelligence (their relative importance) in building different aspects of career adaptabilities and job-search success of university students.


This study employed survey data from 729 full-time students enrolled in an Indian university. Hierarchical regression analyses were conducted to test the hypotheses, and the size of indirect effect was tested using SPSS PROCESS macro.


The ability-based emotional intelligence, along with the use and regulation of emotion in job-search success, plays a significant role in shaping career adaptabilities and job-search success. The ability to use and regulate emotions does have its impact on job-search success through a self-regulatory psychological resource of control and confidence over one's career. Self-emotional appraisal is necessary for an individual to be concerned for a career which forms the initiation of any job-search.

Research limitations/implications

Ability-based approach of enhancing emotional intelligence allows the university students to take a developmental approach in employment. This approach benefits the more “targeted approach to training interventions” provided by various stakeholders in the university, associated with career and employment.


Further, the study focuses on the psychological difficulties (over operational) faced by students in their employment endeavour. Both emotions and psychological resources are believed to play an important role in the career intervention. For instance, past researches have studied trait-based emotional intelligence as a personality construct. However, this study considers emotional intelligence as an ability-based aspect of intelligence, which “readily lends itself to interventions that can be enhanced through targeted training, coaching or counselling”.



Declaration: We didn't receive any financial assistance for conducting this research. Data were collected from individuals. However, we have disguised their names for maintaining the confidentiality.


Mittal, S. (2021), "Ability-based emotional intelligence and career adaptability: role in job-search success of university students", Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, Vol. 11 No. 2, pp. 454-470.



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