Psychologist Kevin Dutton presents the classic psychological test known as “the trolley problem” with a variation. Take the test and measure your response on the psychopathic spectrum.
Are You a Psychopath? Take the Test. – YouTube.
Megan Gannon via LiveScience
New research suggests we may be able to sniff out psychopaths by their poor scores on a smell test.
In the study, psychologists at Macquarie University in Australia tested the noses of more than 70 college-age participants, all without criminal records. The researchers had the subjects try to identify common odors (like orange, coffee and leather) and distinguish between different scents.
The participants then were given personality tests to check for their level of empathy and psychopathic tendencies. For example, the subjects were asked to rate on a 5-point scale how much they agreed with statements such as: “I purposely flatter people to get them on my side;” “People sometimes say that I’m cold-hearted;” and “I have broken into a building or vehicle in order to steal something or vandalize.”
Psycopathy is a personality disorder marked by superficial charm, a lack of empathy and impulsive tendencies.
The researchers reported a correlation between a poorer sense of smell and psychopathic personality traits.
They say this makes sense because previous research has shown that people with such traits have decreased function in the brain’s frontal lobes, a region associated with impulse control and acting in accordance with social norms — and dysfunction in that part of the brain is associated with an impaired sense of smell.
Keep Reading: Psychopaths Have Poor Sense of Smell, Study Finds | LiveScience.