People who are confident in their intellectual abilities tend to have a higher IQ, a study finds.
Those who have confidence bordering on arrogance do better in academic tests.
People with higher IQs tend to agree with statements like “I believe my own ideas are superior to others.”
The intellectually arrogant tend to be seen by others as dominating the group and being extraverted.
Intellectually arrogant people tend to be the centre of attention and also score higher marks in tests, the study found.
On the down side, the intellectually arrogant are not liked as well as their peers who are more humble.
Professor Wade C. Rowatt, study co-author, said:
“One possibility is that people who view themselves as intellectually arrogant know what they know and that translates to increases in academic performance.”
The conclusions come from a study of 103 students.
The study’s authors predicted that intellectual humility would be linked to better results on coursework.
However, it was the intellectually arrogant who got the best scores.
Dr Benjamin R. Meagher, the study’s first author, still thinks humility is a vital trait:
“What I think is important about intellectual humility is its necessity for not only science, but for just learning generally — and that applies to the classroom, a work setting, wherever.
Learning something new requires first acknowledging your own ignorance and being willing to make your ignorance known to others.
People clearly differ in terms of their willingness to do something like that, but that willingness to learn, change one’s mind and value the opinion of others is really needed if people and groups are going to develop and grow.”
About the author
Psychologist, Jeremy Dean, PhD is the founder and author of PsyBlog. He holds a doctorate in psychology from University College London and two other advanced degrees in psychology.
He has been writing about scientific research on PsyBlog since 2004. He is also the author of the book “Making Habits, Breaking Habits” (Da Capo, 2003) and several ebooks:
- Accept Yourself: How to feel a profound sense of warmth and self-compassion
- The Anxiety Plan: 42 Strategies For Worry, Phobias, OCD and Panic
- Spark: 17 Steps That Will Boost Your Motivation For Anything
- Activate: How To Find Joy Again By Changing What You Do
The study was published in the Journal of Research in Personality (Meagher et al., 2015).