Personality Type and Asperger's Syndrome

The diagnosis of Asperger's Syndrome may sometimes be a misinterpretation of a personality type of ISTP or INTP, according to researcher Robert G. Chester in an article published in the Journal of Psychological Type. Many of the symptoms of Asperger's syndrome, including a preference for solitude, visual and intuitive thinking, and a critical and objective communication style, are similar to characteristics of normal type development among ISTPs and INTPs.

The author also notes that mothers who are ENFJs or ESFJs may find their ISTP and INTP children particularly difficult to understand, which may lead to the children being labeled with a diagnosis of Asperger's disorder. Although Chester found no evidence that Asperger's syndrome is not a valid diagnosis, the syndrome may in some cases be confused with the normal personality traits of INTP and ISTP types.

Molly Owens

Molly Owens is the founder and CEO of Truity. She is a graduate of UC Berkeley and holds a master's degree in counseling psychology. She began working with personality assessments in 2006, and in 2012 founded Truity with the goal of making robust, scientifically validated assessments more accessible and user-friendly.

Molly is an ENTP and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she enjoys elaborate cooking projects, murder mysteries, and exploring with her husband and son.


Angie Davidson (not verified) says...

This makes sense. I have taken the evaluation tests for Asperger's and have scored really high on the markers, though I have not been diagnosed with autism. As an INTP, I spend a lot of time in my own head and can be socially awkward at times due to my differences in communication (can be overly critical, too intense, etc.) Would like to see more studies done on this in the future. Thanks for the info and name of the publication.

Robert Chester (INTJ) (not verified) says...


The full paper is posted at

Tracy L Lehane (not verified) says...

If you have a qualified professional making the diagnosis, they know the difference between being an introvert and having autism. Asperger's is a lot more than being introverted and a lot more than what's on the MTBI test.

Tracy L Lehane (not verified) says...

If you have a qualified professional making the diagnosis, they will know the difference between being an introvert and having autism. A lot more goes into a diagnosis of autism,than a personality quiz.

Cheyenne Oliver (not verified) says...

Professionals can sometimes be wrong, too. They're only human and can make mistakes.

Colin Newman (not verified) says...

I would like to point out, that INTP's and ISTP's are not the only ones to test as being on the spectrum. I myself test as an ENTJ even when evalutating my cognitive functions. There is no shadow of the doubt that I have Aspergers syndrome.

Gillian C (not verified) says...

I agree that many people diagnosed  with Asperger's  a (like myself) reflect a personality type. Experts can be wrong: there are trends in psychology, as in all scientific research and social understandings of what constitutes normal and abnormal behaviour. This is not a lack of insight but to remember that a few hundred years ago, witches were considered abnormal, and a few decades ago, homosexuality was deemed an illness.

hesperus (not verified) says...

I agree with the others that we (aspies) can show up as a number of different personality types on these tests. I find that I can more or less control the test to achieve whatever outcome I want, but I usually don't bother. It's not that different from the thousands of decisions we have to take during almost every human interaction to simulate neuro-typical people.

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