Is It Enough to Be an Extrovert to Be Liked? Emotional Competence Moderates the Relationship Between Extraversion and Peer-Rated Likeability

Dorota Szczygieł , Moïra Mikolajczak


Likeability represents one of the aspects of social status in a peer group and refers to the extent to which one is accepted, preferred by others, and perceived as a likeable companion. Previous research has demonstrated that likeability is partly determined by dispositional factors. One body of research shows that variance in likeability across individuals can be traced to personality traits, mainly extraversion and agreeableness. Another expanding body of research demonstrates that success in achieving peer acceptance is determined, in some part, by the emotional competencies (ECs) of an individual. In an attempt to combine these two approaches and to clarify some inconsistencies in the results concerning the personality–likeability relationships, this study was designed to examine the interactive effect of adolescents’ personality traits (i.e., extraversion and agreeableness) and ECs on peer-rated likeability in adolescence. A sample of 230 adolescents (47% female) from two comprehensive secondary schools in Poland completed measures of personality traits and ECs, as well as a sociometric assessment of likeability in their classrooms. The results demonstrated that interpersonal EC acts as a moderator in the relationship between extraversion and peer-rated likeability. Specifically, extraversion predicted greater likeability among adolescents with high interpersonal EC but not among adolescents with low interpersonal EC. The study yielded new insights into the determinants of likeability, as it demonstrates that adolescents need to be both extrovert and possess high interpersonal EC in order to be judged highly likeable by their peers. It also bears practical implications for the improvement of adolescents’ position and acceptance within their peer group. The results suggest that encouraging “rejected” adolescents to reach out to others in an extrovert fashion is necessary but insufficient to increase their likeability. Improving their interpersonal EC is also necessary. The observation that higher levels of interpersonal EC helps adolescents to achieve higher acceptance in their peer group suggests the need to implement school training programs aimed at improving the core ECs (identification, understanding, expression, regulation and use of emotions).
Author Dorota Szczygieł (Wydział Zamiejscowy w Sopocie)
Dorota Szczygieł,,
- Wydział Zamiejscowy w Sopocie
, Moïra Mikolajczak
Moïra Mikolajczak,,
Journal seriesFrontiers in Psychology, ISSN 1664-1078, (A 35 pkt)
Issue year2018
Publication size in sheets0.5
Keywords in Englishpersonality, trait emotional intelligence, emotional competence, adolescents, peer relations, social status, peer acceptance
ASJC Classification3200 General Psychology
Languageen angielski
Szczygieł&Mikolajczak_2018Frontiers.pdf 463.67 KB
Additional file
DSzczygieł_afiliacja.pdf 15.65 KB
Score (nominal)35
Score sourcejournalList
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2016 = 1.006; WoS Impact Factor: 2017 = 2.089 (2) - 2017=2.749 (5)
Citation count*9 (2021-01-22)
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