Emotion Recognition Index (ERI)

The ERI (Scherer & Scherer, 2011) is a rapid screening instrument measuring emotion recognition ability. The ERI consists of a facial and a vocal subtest; each one measuring accuracy in detecting sad, fearful, angry, happy, and neutral expressions.

The facial subtest uses pictures of posed expressions from the Pictures of Facial Affect set (Ekman & Friesen, 1976) that are each presented for 3 seconds.

The vocal subtest is composed of recordings produced by radio actors that are part of the GVEESS corpus (Banse & Scherer, 1996). In these recordings, the verbal content is one of two pseudo-linguistic sentences, i.e., sentences that resemble natural speech but are meaningless.

In both subtests, participants are asked to choose after each portrayal (without time limitation), which emotion had been expressed. The total score is computed from the number of items in which the participant’s response matched the target emotion. Due to the low number of items per emotions, the authors do not recommend using subscores per emotion. The duration of the complete ERI is 10-15 minutes.


To try out the ERI, please go to our Exploring your EC page.


Obtaining the ERI for research purposes


The ERI is available as an online test. If you wish to use the ERI for academic research purposes, please follow the instructions below:


  1.     Read the User's guide for details about the test and academic use.
  2.     Download and print the user agreement form.
  3.     Send the completed and signed agreement form together with a brief description of the project (1/2 to 1 page) in which you want to use the ERI to eureca(at)ugent.be. Please cc each additional person (e.g., research assistants) who should get access to the test in your email.
  4.     Upon approval of your request, you will get access to your personal online version that you can distribute to your participants.



Scherer, K. R., & Scherer, U. (2011). Assessing the Ability to Recognize Facial and Vocal Expressions of Emotion: Construction and Validation of the Emotion Recognition Index. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior, 35(4), 305–326.