Correlation Between Openness And The Accuracy Of An Individual 's Answers

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Research Questions and hypotheses:

1) Is openness related to general knowledge?

Openness reflects how curious and inquisitive a person is and to what extent they might invest in intellectual activities (Furnham et al., 2008). Therefore, I hypothesize that we should see a significant positive correlation between openness and the accuracy of an individual’s answers. Accuracy is the ability to discriminate between existing and fake items, which indicates knowledge (Paulhus et al., 2003). This relationship has been reported in previous research. The null hypothesis is that there is no significant positive correlation between the two variables.

2) Is honesty/humility related to claiming familiarity with unreal concepts (false alarms)?

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Some of the statements were reverse coded. Finally, the participants rated their familiarity with 30 concepts on a 7-point scale, with familiarity ranging from 1 (never heard of the concept) to 7 (knew it very well). 6 of these topics, however, were unreal. This is technique is called the overclaiming technique, which measures both intelligence and the self-enhancement bias (Paulhus et al., 2003). After the experiment, participants were told the aims of the study.

Before analysis was carried out, using SPSS, I reverse scored personality statements, computed mean scores for the personality variables, recoded general knowledge responses (0 = no familiarity; 1 = familiarity), and calculated the proportion of real items rated as familiar (p(Hits)) and unreal concepts being rated as being familiar (p(False alarms)). I also calculated accuracy and bias indexes using standard signal detection formulas (Paulhus et al., 2003).


1) This table shows the descriptive statistics for openness and accuracy.

Std. Deviation
4.00 accuracy 98

To address this question, a bivariate correlation analysis was carried out using SPSS to assess whether there was a relationship between openness and accuracy. There was a weak, positive correlation between the mean openness score and participants’ accuracy in determining whether concepts are real (r = .12, n = 98, p = .25). A scatterplot summarizes the results (Figure

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