2 - International Conference in Emergency Medicine and Public Health-Qatar Proceedings
  • ISSN: 1999-7086
  • EISSN: 1999-7094


Previous reports suggest prevalence of high stress levels and psychological morbidity among medical students. This study aimed to elucidate factors for Perceived Stress (PS), role of Emotional Intelligence (EI) in the experience of PS and its association with academic background and satisfaction with career choice among medical students.

A cross-sectional survey was conducted in Riyadh-Medical-College-Saudi-Arabia on First (n = 40) and Final year (n = 35) Female medical undergraduates during year 2015. Students were administered Schutte's Emotional Intelligence Inventory and Cohen's Perceived Stress Scale. Additional information was collected on participant demographics, previous qualification in higher education and career satisfaction level. Basic descriptive statistics –correlation & regression were used for data analysis.

The survey had a 99% response rate. Seniors were more stressed than Juniors. Although there was no significant difference for EI scores between the two groups, still, there existed a ‘definite trend’ of ‘Low EI Scores’ being associated with ‘High Perceived Stress Levels’. ‘Low scorers’ on the EI were more likely to be (i) younger age group, (ii) without a previous higher education qualification (iii) not satisfied with their decision to study medicine (p < 0.01).

There is an inverse correlation between EI and PS. Significant predictors of PS are age, previous higher education qualification, satisfaction with the decision to study medicine and EI level. It would be interesting to explore by further research, if any possible difference exists between genders. The ‘t’ statistic indicates EI as a pivotal predictor of PS in medical profession. We suggest that health profession institutions could organize regular programs to enhance students' EI. Considering substantial previous research evidence on Stress and Professionalism being an interrelated phenomenon in Health professions, it would be logical to consider EI as a possible qualitative selection criterion for medical students to improve eventual outcomes.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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