People differ greatly in how openly they express their emotions. Some people are relatively stoic and impassive, rarely making their feelings obvious to those around them. Other people are more expressive, and provide many outward clues to how they are feeling. This 17-item measure of emotional expressivity assesses how emotionally expressive you are of emotions (pleasant, or unpleasant) – be it whether you express them via facial expressions, vocalizations, or gestures. Do you wear your heart on your sleeve or hide your feelings deep? Take the survey to find out!

For each item, please answer whether it is:

Never True = 1

Untrue = 2

Somewhat Untrue= 3

Somewhat True= 4

True = 5

Always true = 6


1. I think of myself as emotionally expressive.

2. People think of me as an unemotional person.

3. I keep my feelings to myself.

4. I am often considered indifferent by others.

5. People can read my emotions.

6. I display my emotions to other people.

7. I don’t like to let other people see how I’m feeling.

8. I am able to cry in front of other people.

9. Even if I am feeling very emotional, I don’t let others see my feelings.

10. Other people aren’t easily able to observe what I’m feeling.

11. I am not very emotionally expressive.

12. Even when I’m experiencing strong feelings, I don’t express them outwardly.

13. I can’t hide the way I am feeling.

14. Other people believe me to be very emotional.

15. I don’t express my emotions to other people.

16. The way I feel is different from how others think I feel.

17. I hold my feelings in.


!! Reverse Scoring

Items 2, 3, 4, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12 15, 16 and 17 are reverse-scored as follows:

Never True = 6

Untrue = 5

Somewhat Untrue= 4

Somewhat True= 3

True = 2

Always true = 1

Once you have your reversed score, sum up all 17 items and then divide the total by 17 to get an average score.


The average score on this emotional expressivity scale is 64.67 from a sample of 373 undergraduate students. Females generally tend to score higher in terms of emotional expressivity than men.


Kring, A. M., Smith, D. A., & Neale, J. M. (1994). Individual differences in dispositional expressiveness: development and validation of the Emotional Expressivity Scale. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 66(5), 934-949.


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