Review History

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  • The initial submission of this article was received on June 8th, 2016 and was peer-reviewed by 3 reviewers and the Academic Editor.
  • The Academic Editor made their initial decision on July 20th, 2016.
  • The first revision was submitted on August 4th, 2016 and was reviewed by the Academic Editor.
  • The article was Accepted by the Academic Editor on August 30th, 2016.

Version 0.2 (accepted)

· Aug 30, 2016 · Academic Editor


Dear Authors,

My apologies for the earlier confusion over the decision on your manuscript. I have evaluated your rebuttal and revision and I am happy to Accept your paper.

Version 0.1 (original submission)

· Jul 20, 2016 · Academic Editor

Minor Revisions

Your manuscript received three reviews, one of them requesting minor revision. The process of re-review will be facilitated if you respond to the reviewers on an item-by-item basis and specify where changes have been made. Be sure that reviewers' requests are addressed in the text, and not merely in the response to reviewers.

Reviewer 1 ·

Basic reporting

I have now read the manuscript entitled, "Exploring the socio-emotional factors associated with subjective well-being in the unemployed." The paper reports on a study examining how Emotional Intelligence predicts well-being outcomes (e.g., depression, stress, happiness, and life satisfaction) among an unemployed population (a group which has received relatively little study with respect to these factors).

Overall, I found the paper extremely well written with few issues relating to writing. I noted two minor issues below"

- On the second page of the body of the paper, the authors write, "unemployment people" where they probably mean "unemployed people" (line 77, page 2 of body text).

- On page 13 of the body of the manuscript, the sentence: "These
results are in line with previous research and extend prior work that these psychosocial resources..." is confusing as written. I would suggest breaking it up somewhat for clarity purposes.

I am not an expert in this area, though I am familiar with the constructs assessed (including several of the specific scales used). As a somewhat outsider, I found the introduction to offer excellent background review of the existing literature.

The figures/tables are appropriate and the data from the sample was included as per journal regulations.

Experimental design

In my opinion, the paper offers new work and clearly defines the research question and eventual hypothesis, along with existing theory for why this hypothesis makes sense. The scales used are appropriate and the statistical analysis is equally so. I have some minor concerns with the method and reporting of statistics I outline below:

- Can the authors clarify the ordering of the scales described in the method and included in the procedure? If they were in fact given always in the order they were listed, please state as such.

- Unless it is not the norm for the journal, I would strongly suggest that specific p-values be included rather than simply stated <.05 or >.05. If the norm is otherwise, feel free to ignore this comment.

Validity of the findings

I think the statistical analysis plan was appropriate and the data are reasonably clear and do indeed relate to this initial hypotheses. The conclusions also relate to that initial question.

The authors do a bit of reaching as they attempt to link their results to conclusions related to a broader context (e.g., how these results speak to intervention strategies). In my opinion, this is done in an acceptable way.

Reviewer 2 ·

Basic reporting

This study addresses the role of emotional intelligence dimensions on depression, anxiety, and subjective well-being controlling for both socio-demographic and traditional variables such as social support. The theoretical development of the article is correct and, considering the literature review and the structure of the sections, the authors demonstrate their mastery of the subject.
Although the theoretical background is appropriate, I missed specific allusions to unemployment in Spain with some statistics that addresses the number of people who unfortunately are in that situation in the country. This should be explained in the Introduction section.
In addition, it is necessary to inform and differentiate between the different theoretical models of EI and between the existing measures of the construct.
The working hypotheses should specify which dimensions are expected to predict the criterion variables of the study according to previous literature.

Experimental design

No comments

Validity of the findings

Regarding to the Results section, the presentation of the results is correct, using descriptive analysis, Pearson correlations and hierarchical regressions. Despite the analyses are appropriate, it might have been interesting to conduct an analysis of structural equation modelling (SEM), in order to deepen into the relationships between the study variables.

Additional comments

Since two measures of subjective well-being are used, it would be positive to note which differential aspects, if any, provides each instrument.
It would be positive to reason about why some EI dimensions fail to predict subjective well-being and psychological adjustment variables.
Repeatedly throughout the Discussion section, the authors discuss the contribution of emotional skills and/or abilities.
Since in this paper a self-report measure of EI is used, it might be more appropriate to refer to the contribution of self-perceptions of EI or perceived EI. This should be noted for the entire manuscript.

In summary, I believe that, if the changes indicated in the previous comments are made, this work would be suitable for publication in PeerJ.


Basic reporting

The article has been written in a clear way, it is easy to follow the reasoning of the work. The structure and the language are right.
The introduction and background are well substantiated; the references are relevant and updated. And the motivation for the study is clearly exposed and justified.
Tables are relevant to show the results of the study and fulfil the APA rules.
Nevertheless, It would be better if the authors used “depressive symptomatology” and “anxious symptomatology” instead depression or anxiety, because the participants were not clinically depressed or they had not a clinically anxiety disorder.

Experimental design

Research question is relevant, especially in Spain where the unemployment levels are very high, in fact, there are higher than other European Countries. From a theoretical point of view, research question is well defined and try to fill a gap in the literature providing new knowledge about the specific weight of the components of IE on well-being and on mental health in people who lost their jobs.
The instruments used are reliable and they are used in a lot of previous research to assess the variables defined in this work. The procedure of the research is right, and methods are clearly described.

Validity of the findings

This research provides significant results and the conclusions are well stated, the authors show the relations between their results and the previous research questions, and they point out the possible limitations of their results.
The results are not as statistically robust as they expected and the authors discuss it properly, one possibility to these lower associations could be the sample, it is enough but maybe with a wider sample the results could be more robust. And, in my opinion other reason, for the results on depression and anxiety could be that participants did not show high scores on these scales, so the association between IE and depression and anxiety could be higher if the sample would include participants with higher levels on depression and anxiety. Nevertheless, the results are relevant and as the authors point out it allows them establish social, theoretical and practical implications.
Conclusions are well sustainable by data, the authors make a good work pointing the limitations of the study as well as its strong points, and I think is especially valuable their statements about the practical implications or this work.

Additional comments

This is a good and relevant research line which is convenient future works that used a largest sample and specially a sample with different levels of depression and anxious symptomatology, that it could allow you to find stronger associations.

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