Who wants to take an intelligence test? Personality and achievement motivation in the context of ability testing

Research output: Journal contributionsJournal articlesResearchpeer-review


This article examines the role of the BIG 5 and general mental ability (GMA) for the prediction of current achievement motivation (CAM) in an ability testing context. A total of 189 participants took two figural matrices tests, and 90 of them received a training intervention between tests. Separate analyses for both tests showed openness, conscientiousness, and neuroticism to significantly predict CAM. Also, more intelligent persons were more interested and more confident. Training had an additional impact on probability of success. CAM in turn significantly predicted matrices test performance and test times beyond GMA. The results show that the BIG 5 can be used to understand what kind of persons are really motivated in experimental testing situations, and how strongly test performance is tied not only to GMA, but also to CAM.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)723-728
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 04.2011

    Research areas

  • Psychology - Achievement motivation, BIG 5, Intelligence test, Personality