Entitlement mediates the relationship between dark triad traits and academic misconduct
Personality and Individual Differences
School of Arts and Humanities
The Dark Triad personality traits of psychopathy, Machiavellianism, and narcissism are positively related to engagement in academic misconduct (e.g., plagiarism and cheating) by higher education students. This study examined whether feelings of entitlement in an academic context mediated the relationship between Dark Triad personality traits and academic misconduct. Students from three universities (N = 387) completed measures of the Dark Triad, academic entitlement (entitled expectations and externalized responsibilities), and academic misconduct behaviors. One of the two facets of academic entitlement, externalized responsibilities, mediated the relationship between all three dark triad traits and academic misconduct. These results suggest that academic misconduct may be reduced by modifying academic entitlement beliefs among students.