ASD and Personality

LLAPI’ve been exploring neurocognitive domains as an alternative to the element and trait personality model. This morning it occured to me how they might align rather than compete.

I’ve used NCDs previously to illustrate the functionality of people with Autism. But people with Autism can have very different presonalities. One way to think of it is like the science officers from different Star Trek shows. Most people think Autism yields a personality like Data, with limited emotionality. But as Spock’s parents are always reminding him, Vulcans have powerful emotions which they developed logic to master. Then you have Dax*, which is two minds in one personality. Voyager had the science role filled alternately by the holographic doctor and eventually Seven of Nine, who both struggled with identity and connection to humanity. Enterprise’s T’Pol was convinced of the superiority of logic, not as ready to see human frailty as an asset.


These differences arise depending on how the elements of personality (the core features) are aligned with neurocognitive domains. So the core feature of identity is aligned with judgment in the case of T’pol. Dax’s identity is more aligned with memory, while Data was aligned with attention. Seven of nine looked for identity in social cognition. The Doctor struggled to put his identity in words. Spock is a little puzzling. His character has been through more than any other. I’d argue that with his elevated strength and frequent romantic exploits, his alignment is perceptual-motor.

I had previously reflected on the traits of personality having different alignments with the elements of personality. For me, it is easy to the elements (white) bounded by the traits (green) in the OCEAP arrangement.
Elements and traits (1)
But I’d grant that for many people, Agreeableness might be their identity, or Extraversion. There was a time Lucidity was the core of my identity. The more memorable but less accurate acronym of OCEAN (neuroticism in place of lucidity) had an alternate of CANOE, with other perumutations possible if we wished to order them by people’s strengths.

NB:  Dax?  Dax is not autistic, you say.  What do you make of the idea that 4 times as many boys as girls are autistic?  It’s not enough to be sex linked, like color blindness.  I think it shows up differently in girls, possibly due to the tendency of women to have higher verbal reasoning.


LLAP from

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s