Intelligence has consistently been recognized as a robust correlate of health, life success, and behavior. Evidence also suggests that intelligence may contribute to another key correlate of behavior: self-control. The current study builds on recent work in this area by examining the association between intelligence and self-control across multiple raters and when accounting for potential confounding influences not accounted for in prior research. Results based on a national sample of U.S. children indicates that higher scores for intelligence are associated with more self-control in both cross-sectional and longitudinal models, even when accounting for prior self-control, child executive functioning, maternal intelligence, and maternal self-control. Moreover, the association persisted across both teacher and mother ratings of child self-control. As such, these findings support and extend prior work examining the nexus between intelligence and self-control, and may explain why both traits are important for understanding success across a host of life outcomes in humans.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)