Personality Traits and Multiple Intelligences as Predictors of Reading Proficiency among Iranian EFL learners

Document Type: Original Article


1 PhD Candidate of TEFL, Department of English Language, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, Payam Noor University, Tehran, Iran

2 Professor of Applied Linguistics, Department of English language, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman, Iran

3 Associate Professor of TEFL, Department of English Language, Faculty of Literature and Humanities, Payam Noor University, Tehran, Iran


The present study investigated the relationship between personality traits and multiple intelligences, and learners’ reading proficiency. To this end, 384 graduate EFL students participated in the present study. Two questionnaires, namely the NEO personality inventory-revised, and McKenzie’s (1999) MI inventory as well as a sample TOFEL reading comprehension test were used to collect the data. Three regression models, backward, forward, and stepwise were used to determine prediction equations for the reading performance of EFL graduate students. Path analysis technique was employed to assess the magnitude of direct and indirect relationship of the variables. The result of the statistical analysis showed that there were only positive as well as direct relationships between interpersonal intelligence and reading proficiency, while the other intelligences such as intrapersonal, existential, naturalist, etc. would account for negative relationship with the criterion variable, reading proficiency. Agreeableness was found to be the only personality trait which had direct and negative relationship with the criterion variable. Additionally, the relationship among conscientiousness and extroversion traits as well as spatial, verbal, and mathematical intelligences with the criterion variable proved to be indirect. All the mentioned relationships between graduate EFL learners’ personality traits and multiple intelligences with their reading proficiency would lead the researchers to conclude that although various individuals have a tendency to do differently while reading in spite of the different reading preferences, readers tend to be relatively consistent in their performance.


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