Personality predicts academic performance: Evidence from two longitudinal university samples

Chamorro-Premuzic, Tomas and Furnham, Adrian. 2003. Personality predicts academic performance: Evidence from two longitudinal university samples. Journal of Research in Personality, 37(4), pp. 319-338. ISSN 00926566 [Article]

No full text available

Abstract or Description

To what extent and which personality traits predict academic performance was investigated in two longitudinal studies of two British university samples. Academic performance was assessed throughout a three years period and via multiple criteria (e.g., exams and final-year project). In addition several indicators of academic behaviour, e.g., absenteeism, essay writing, tutors’ exam predictions, were also examined with regard to both academic performance and personality traits. In sample 1 (N=70), the Big Five personality factors ([Costa and McCrae, 1992])—particularly Neuroticism and Conscientiousness—were found to predict overall final exam marks over and above several academic predictors, accounting for more than 10% of unique variance in overall exam marks. Results suggest that Neuroticism may impair academic performance, while Conscientiousness may lead to higher academic achievement. In sample 2 (N=75) the EPQ-R ([Eysenck and Eysenck, 1985]) was used as the personality measure and results showed the three superfactors were the most powerful predictor of academic performance, accounting for nearly 17% of unique variance in overall exam results. It is demonstrated that (like Neuroctisim) Psychoticism could limit academic success. The present results provide evidence supporting the inclusion of well-established personality measures in academic selection procedures, and run counter to the traditional view of ability measures as the exclusive psychometric correlate of academic performance.

Item Type:


Identification Number (DOI):

Departments, Centres and Research Units:




Item ID:


Date Deposited:

01 Mar 2011 14:40

Last Modified:

06 Jun 2016 15:38

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


Edit Record Edit Record (login required)