Personality Type and Asperger's Syndrome

Clinically Reviewed by Steven Melendy, PsyD. on March 23, 2010

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.

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About the Clinical Reviewer

Steven Melendy, PsyD., is a Clinical Psychologist who received his doctorate from The Wright Institute in Berkeley, California. He specializes in using evidence-based approaches in his work with individuals and groups. Steve has worked with diverse populations and in variety of a settings, from community clinics to SF General Hospital. He believes strongly in the importance of self-care, good friendships, and humor whenever possible.


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.

Lunarious (not verified) says...

Asperger's and Autism undergoes more problems than simply Introverts. Whereas introverts supposedly can but don't want to socialize alot. Asperger's want to socialize but can' alot. Little, like now (for me). 

Like me for example, I'm banned online and offline ... I don't cut myself, but to avoid this boredom I might take up school and "accept" it, thus "cutting myself" - to avoid loneliness.

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.

Lunarious (not verified) says...

I get banned online and offline for not wanting to lie as Aspie.

Ulla98 (not verified) says...

I am INFJ. My husband is ISTP. It was suggested to me that he has Aspergers, based on our relationship, and that seemed possible, but honestly, I think just the differences between INFJ and ISTP might account for my perceptions.

Lunarious (not verified) says...

I just "think":


NFJ are like; "think fast! Look up!" ....While STP are thinking slow, are looking down as on a microscope or what thei're working on and thus "Bowing and Prostating" aka looking down. For example looking down on a book, Ti wise.

Imam Ali says knowledge makes Humbel.

Claire K (not verified) says...

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that if someone is diagnosed with being on the autism spectrum (note: people are no longer diagnosed with aspergers), which is extremely difficult to get done and highly inaccessible for most people, it is probably more likely that (ie. the actual psychological diagnosis) than one's MBTI diagnosis, which has no actual psychological basis. 

Charl (not verified) says...

It is strange, as I've got like 58 percent in Extraverted, and 50 percent in feelings and thinking. And I myself have Asperger's/High-Functioning Autism. Although, when I first took the test as a child, I've got strong INTP/INTJ results the whole time. Seems like personalities does not stay the same always.

GhK (not verified) says...

And then there are people like my mom who are clearly both autistic and INTP. But she's one of many INTPs in the family, most of whom aren't autistic. So be careful not to go the opposite route and fail to diagnose actual autistic IxTPs.

RayZ11 (not verified) says...

Why is this article talking about Aspergers/autism like it is an illness? Its a brain pattern. What would be the difference if someone has autism and got a personality type? Are you saying that people on the spectrum don't have a personality type? If someone on the spectrum is an INTP then thats their personality type.

Willow H (not verified) says...

I agree. I had wondered if there was a correlation with the M-B test. It seems there would be, as one's Aspberger's traits are definately one's personaliy traits.

Lori Lou (not verified) says...

I am INTP. However, if I am put through stress and I feel trauma... then I can seem like Aspergers. Which makes me wonder. Is Aspergers PTSD?

Because being around ppl who talk loud and shrill I noticed will throw me into panic if I can't leave.

I am greatly sensitive... and if people move to come against my own center of calm by way too much stimulus... I can really feel like it's like Aspergers. Like, wear down my boundary lines or trying to force me outside my comfort zone... things change.


Leave me be... I am INTP, calm, and ppl think me a social butterfly because of how diplomatic and socially adept I am.

I think it's social anxiety, sensitivity, and if people are too crass, etc.

It's not like a "constant Aspergers". Though I would say my inner depth being so magnified, that beginning to share to come out of my shell it is vulnerable feeling... and the adjustment process feels like Aspergers. Which makes me wonder if Aspergers is ppl at times of high stress or trauma. 

Because I work my way out of those feelings/behaviors as I assert, come out of my shell, then adjust to more sharing of myself personally - or learning a new skill - or feeling comfortable in a new environment.

Mostly, I am typical INTP.

I believe female INTPs are greatly discriminated against to force conformity to patriarchy.

That causes trauma. And Aspergers style things can manifest due to sexist suppression of gifts and talents as ppl try to force into gender conformity. INTP females are gifted, logical,  and do not conform to the gender stereotype of women.

Gerard Gras Capellà (not verified) says...

First of all thank you for all the work and dedication that can be seen in your page. It's amazing to read many of the things that you have investigated, and I think that the tests are perfectly designed.

I was diagnosed an asperger at eleven (low percentage) and have recently been more open-minded on it. I think it is interesting because my mbti is ENTP, very clearly above some other good matches. I would see asperger both in extroverted and introverted people, maybe someone with asperger doesn't have to be shy just because of that. It is more on the natural social skill not just restraining from interaction. People with traits of asperger can be very imaginative and incredibly fun and creative above average.

Keep it up, thanks!

Gerard Gras Capellà

Angel Douglas (not verified) says...

My son has Asperger like autism and tested as ENTP he was nearly half and half introverted and extroverted. A few years ago he was more introverted but he has become more sociable. 

Carol Drayson (not verified) says...

Can I also suggest that people may enjoy reading a book called "The Power of Misfits''? It also covers many of these things very well. 


Alec Heesacker (not verified) says...

I have Aspergers as a man. No doubt about that.

Still searching for another Aspergers that's a woman.

aspiegurl (not verified) says...

I'm a female diagnosed with Asperger's when it was still a thing. I present online as _SFP because I like NASCAR, a Sensing interest, but I combined it with an Intuitive thing, poetry.  _SFP types use Fi, which is kind of intuitive and because of using Se, also have Ni as a lesser function, which creates something called an Intuitive Sensor.  My NASCAR poems are on Wattpad, along with my Divergent fanfiction, my own dystopia created to make people think and a story about me if I had a baby brother.  My mom had a miscarriage when I was 4 and I pretend that was my baby brother and for the story, that he lived.  I also have some NASCAR stories on Beyond The Track.  Last year, I got nostalgic for TTTE, a childhood TV favorite, according to my first-grade self and have some FanFiction stores rooted in that nostalgia.  My stories restore the early story vibe of the show, mostly.  My stories can be emotional (Fi), my tendency's to not divert much from canon-type framework with fanfics (Se) and I have P traits in my style, a relaxed, don't rush the facts with a tendency to use P type characters in my FanFiction stories.

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