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A possible model for understanding the personality-intelligence interface


Department of Psychology, University College London, 26 Bedford Way, London WC1E OAP, UK (e-mail:


Despite the recent increase in the number of studies examining empirical links between personality and intelligence (see Hofstee, 2001; Zeidner & Matthews, 2000), a theoretical integration of ability and nonability traits remains largely unaddressed. This paper presents a possible conceptual framework for understanding the personality-intelligence interface. In doing so, it conceptualizes three different levels of intelligence, namely, intellectual ability (which comprises both Gf and Gc), IQ test performance and subjectively assessed intelligence (a mediator between personality, intellectual ability and IQ test performance). Although the model draws heavily upon correlation evidence, each of its paths may be tested independently. The presented model may, therefore, be used to explore causation and further develop theoretical approaches to understanding the relation between ability and nonability traits underlying human performance.