Honors College Theses

Publication Date



Psychology (B.S.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Amy Hackney


As a dark personality, Machiavellianism (MACH) includes callousness and deceit; however, individuals higher in MACH differ from other dark personalities in their strategic long-term orientation to manipulate others to achieve personal success, and their cynical world views towards others. To measure different aspects of personality, research has developed an assessment called the Big Five Inventory. One factor included in the five attributes is (high) conscientiousness: the tendency to be careful towards others, organized, and not impulsive. Such traits seem to support the strategic aspect of the MACH personality but do not support the lack of care that individuals higher in MACH display towards others. These contradictions are observed in both past and recent research, and such discrepancies could imply that the term of conscientiousness is too broad and needs further specification. The current study hopes to further specify the term conscientious in relation to MACH by measuring both the personal and interpersonal aspects of conscientiousness. We predicted that MACH will be negatively correlated with conscientiousness for self, and that the two dependent correlations will be significant different from each other. The results generally support the prediction, with a moderate, positive relation between MACH and conscientiousness for self, no relation between MACH and conscientiousness for others, and a significant difference between the two dependent correlations. These findings are beneficial for further defining conscientiousness and establishing further distinction within MACH. To our knowledge this is the first study to examine such relationships.