The Meaning of EQ: What It Is and How To Use It

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What is emotional intelligence? Today’s word of the day is EQ. 

In this article, we will cover the meaning of the abbreviation EQ in various fields and circumstances. Then, we will explore the difference between EQ and IQ, and more!

What Does EQ Usually Stand For?

According to Diffen, the definition of EQ is emotional quotient or emotional intelligence. This term refers to a person’s self-awareness and ability to identify their own emotions as well as the emotions of other people. 

Often, people with a high EQ are great at teamwork and have good leadership skills. These people can use emotions to facilitate different ways of thinking.

EQ is usually measured by an EQ test. Emotional intelligence tests evaluate a person’s empathic abilities versus IQ tests which measure a person’s cognitive abilities.

What Is the Difference Between EQ and IQ?

Just like EQ stands for emotional quotient, IQ stands for intelligence quotient. IQ competencies include learning things quickly, logical reasoning, math and language comprehension, and so on. IQ scores are thought to be a reflection of intellectual ability. 

Having a high EQ and high IQ can benefit things like job performance, problem-solving, and quality of life differently. Working with emotional intelligence or being the smartest person can assist with problem-solving and a person’s well-being in various ways. 

What Is the Origin of the Term EQ?

The term EQ originated in the mid-1980s from the Daniel Goleman thesis A Study of Emotion: Developing Emotional Intelligence and his 1995 book Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ.

What Else Can EQ Stand For?

While the abbreviation EQ most commonly stands for emotional quotient, it can also stand for several other meanings in different fields. Take a look at all of the below acronyms of EQ from The Free Dictionary. Try to notice if you have heard these before in each field.

If someone uses the term EQ in a situation where the “emotional quotient” does not make sense, you can ask them to clarify what they mean by EQ. Many acronyms have more than one meaning, so ensure you provide proper context when using the term EQ. 

EQ Meanings in Technology

If you work in tech, you might hear EQ used to mean one of the following:

  • Equal to (or equivalent; computer math)
  • Electric Quilt (quilting software)

EQ Meanings in Government

In government and politics, EQ can stand for several words and phrases:

  • Equipment Qualification
  • Enlisted Quarters
  • Education Queensland
  • Enumerator Questionnaire (US Census Bureau)

EQ Meanings in Science

Scientists use very specific definitions of EQ!

  • Encephalization Quotient (comparison of intelligence between species)
  • Estimation-Quantization (coder type)
  • Environmental Quality
  • Equipment Qualification
  • Equilibrium
  • Estimation Quantizer
  • Equalization/Equalizer/Equalize (audio term)

EQ Meanings in Business and Organizations

Different businesses and organizations use EQ to abbreviate their titles or business names:

  • Enumerator Questionnaire (US Census Bureau)
  • Electric Quilt (quilting software)
  • English Qaballa
  • Equilibrium
  • EmpireQuest (online game)
  • Equity
  • Exceptional quality ((also seen as eQ)
  • Education Queensland
  • Environmental Quescense (Canada)
  • Ethics Quotient
  • Elder’s Quorum (LDS Church)
  • EarthQuakers (online gaming clan)

Slang Meanings of EQ

EQ even has a few slang meanings!

  • Exceptional quality ((also seen as eQ)
  • EmpireQuest (online game)
  • Evil Queen
  • EverQuest
  • Equilibrium
  • EarthQuakers (online gaming clan)

What Are Translations of EQ?

The abbreviation EQ will not make sense in certain languages because after translating the words emotions quotient, said translation might not start with the same letters. 

If you need to communicate with someone in another language about emotional quotient, you can use this list of translations from Nice Translator

  • Dutch: emotioneel quotiënt
  • Slovak: emocionálny kvocient
  • Japanese: こころの知能指数
  • Romanian: coeficient emoțional
  • Arabic: حاصل عاطفي
  • Vietnamese: tình cảm trìu mến
  • Estonian: emotsionaalne jagaja
  • Czech: emoční kvocient
  • Ukrainian: емоційний коефіцієнт
  • Indonesian: hasil bagi emosional
  • Polish: iloraz emocjonalny
  • Portuguese (Portugal): Quociente emocional
  • Marathi: भावनिक भाग
  • French: quotient émotionnel
  • German: Emotionaler Quotient
  • Catalan: Cocient emocional
  • Welsh: cyniferydd emosiynol
  • Greek: συναισθηματικό πηλίκο
  • Turkish: Duygusal Bölüm
  • Serbian: Емотивни квоцијент
  • Icelandic: Tilfinningaleg kvóti
  • Norwegian: emosjonell kvotient
  • Hungarian: érzelmi hányados
  • Malayalam: വൈകാരിക ഘടകങ്ങൾ
  • Kannada: ಭಾವನಾತ್ಮಕ ಅಂಶ
  • Urdu: جذباتی کوٹینٹ
  • Lithuanian: emocinis koeficientas
  • Bulgarian: емоционален коефициент
  • Telugu: భావోద్వేగ కోటీన్
  • Basque: emozio zatidura
  • Russian: эмоциональный коэффициент
  • Portuguese (Brazil): Quociente emocional
  • Spanish: cociente emocional
  • Bengali: আবেগপ্রবণ ভাগফল
  • Malay: Kota emosi
  • Tamil: உணர்ச்சி அளவு
  • Chinese (PRC): 情感商
  • Gujarati: ભાવનાત્મક ભાવ
  • Hindi: भावनात्मक गुणक
  • Hebrew: כמות רגשית
  • Slovenian: Čustveni količnik
  • Amharic: ስሜታዊ ጥቃቅን
  • Swedish: emotionell kvot
  • Thai: ความฉลาดทางอารมณ์
  • Finnish: emotionaalinen osuus
  • Italian: quoziente emozionale
  • Croatian: emocionalni kvocijent
  • Chinese (Taiwan): 情感商
  • Danish: følelsesmæssig kvotient
  • Latvian: emocionāls koeficients
  • Korean: 정서적 지수
  • Filipino: emosyonal na quient
  • Swahili: Quotient ya kihemko

What Are Synonyms of EQ?

Many people might not know what the term EQ stands for or what emotional quotient means, so it can be very helpful to have a few synonyms of EQ in your back pocket. 

You can reference this list of synonyms of EQ from Power Thesaurus if someone does not know what you mean by EQ. Do you know the definitions of any of the words in the below word list?

  • accord
  • affection
  • affinity
  • agreement
  • amiability
  • appreciation
  • attraction
  • brotherly love
  • camaraderie
  • closeness
  • commiseration
  • communion
  • compassion
  • compatibility
  • concern
  • concord
  • condolence
  • congeniality
  • consideration
  • empathy
  • feeling
  • fellow feeling
  • fondness
  • friendship
  • harmony
  • humanity
  • identification
  • insight
  • kindness
  • like-mindedness
  • liking
  • pity
  • rapport
  • response
  • responsiveness
  • sensibility
  • sensitivity
  • sympathetic response
  • sympathies
  • sympathy
  • tenderness
  • understanding
  • warmheartedness
  • warmth


EQ stands for emotional quotient, which refers to a person’s emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is a person’s ability to express, identify, and control emotions. People with a high EQ are often good leaders and good at working in a group. 


EQ – What does EQ stand for? | The Free Dictionary 

Empathy synonyms – 184 Words and Phrases for Empathy | Power Thesaurus 

Emotional Quotient | Nice Translator 

EQ vs IQ – Difference and Comparison | Diffen