Intelligence and psychopathy: A study on non-incarcerated females from the normal population – 2018-02

Most research on the relation between psychopathy and intelligence has been conducted with incarcerated male samples. However, psychopathic traits can be found among non-incarcerated individuals, male or female, possessing high intellectual capacities. The construct of psychopathy has been comparatively understudied in women. We hypothesized a positive correlation between interpersonal psychopathic traits and intelligence among females, whereby those non-criminal females having high scores on these traits would be more intelligent than those having low scores on these traits. We carried out a correlational analysis and group comparisons on a sample of 121 non-criminal females. Variables that were measured include the Psychopathic Personality Inventory (PPI) total score and its two subscales; the Levenson Primary and Secondary Psychopathy (LPSP) total score and its two subscales; Psychoticism (P) and intelligence measured by Raven’s Standard Progressive Matrices (SPM). A significant positive correlation (r = .33, p < .05) was found between LPSP-I (interpersonal affective factor) and SPM. Separate ANOVAs were conducted to compare SPM scores of the participants, when they were allocated to groups based on either the PPI or the LPSP scores. Performance of the interpersonal affective group (M = 53.32, SD = 3.45) was better than that of the two other groups (M = 50.26, SD = 3.25 for “Impulsive Antisocial”, and M = 49.37, SD = 4.67 for “non psychopathy”).

Tal Ben-Yaacov & Joseph Glicksohn | Marco Tommasi (Reviewing Editor)
Cogent Psychology, 04 Feb 2018