Dr Gregory L. Carter

Dr Gregory Carter

I joined York St John University and the Psychology department in the 2015-2016 academic year, and teach across a range of first and second semester modules in the Psychology BSc and MSc programmes. My interests fall broadly under evolutionary psychology – more details can be found under the other tabs.

My ResearchGate profile

I can also be found on Twitter: @glkfc

Academic qualifications

PhD in Psychology, University of Durham

Areas of research: Narcissism, Machiavellianism, Psychopathy (The Dark Triad); Mating strategies; Competition; Interpersonal behaviour; Personality measurement; Evolutionary psychology; Social psychology

Thesis title: Deep into that darkness, peering: A series of studies on the Dark Triad personality constellation

MSc (Merit grades) degree in Developmental Psychopathology, University of Durham

Covering a range of disorders from a probabilistic epigenetic perspective.

Dissertation title: The Ageing Narcissus: Just a myth? An exploration of sub-clinical narcissism and loneliness in relation to age

BSc degree (honours) in Psychology, University of Durham

Specific focus on Social, Developmental and Evolutionary Psychology.

Dissertation title: The relationship between gender and overt and covert narcissism

Further Information


Semester 1:

3PY346 Forensic Psychology

Semester 2:

1PY406 Personality and Individual Differences (Module Director)
2PY284 Individual Differences II
2PY287 Psychology of Work
3PY346 Forensic Psychology
3PY353 Evolutionary Psychology
MPH305 AHP Workplace Stress and Resilience (MSc)


Having been initially interested in Narcissism, for Gregory’s Undergraduate and Master’s dissertations I explored the relationship between Narcissism and gender, and later, Narcissism’s potentially adaptive benefits. Both led me to expand my work to the Dark Triad, the collective term for the three related, yet distinct, sub-clinical traits of Narcissism, Machiavellianism and Psychopathy.

In the decade and a half since the concept was first brought to academic attention (Paulhus & Williams, 2002), the Dark Triad of sub-clinical narcissism, Machiavellianism and Psychopathy has attracted a great deal of attention, predominantly from an evolutionary and social psychological perspective.

My research addresses these traits as a collective, but also assesses their key differences, since whilst they overlap, they are distinct constructs, and this is reflected in their correlates and outcomes. My work to date has considered how they relate to issues including attractiveness (i.e., the “bad boy” appeal - but see below), mating strategies and preferences, competitiveness - sexual and general - impulsivity, and broader issues such as the traits’ relationship with sporting preferences. (Wider work has also been conducted regarding their relationship with media and video game habits, workplace behaviour, and political orientation.)

I am particularly interested in the perceived attractiveness of this personality and its relationship with short-term sexual success, as well as associated behaviours in relevant scenarios. I am also beginning to look at research that can contribute to explanations of the aetiology of these traits.

Crucially, I am interested in both “bad boys” and “bad girls”, to use colloquial terminology, and my work aims to bring attention to the manifestation of these traits in women, as well as in men. I believe the sex differences in these traits (men typically score higher for them) have enabled an androcentric perspective to prevail, at times, and I wish to counter this.

Finally, I am interested in the methods used to assess these traits, and have previously applied lesser-known analyses to this issue, both in respect of establishing sex- and age-equivalent inventories and translated inventories.

If you would like to learn more about my work to date, you can find me, and copies of my papers, on ResearchGate, email me, or make an appointment to speak with me directly. I would be happy to consider dissertation proposals or collaborative work on any of the above topics, or other subjects under the broad heading of evolutionary psychology and individual differences.

Professional Activities

Research presented at:

International Society for the Study of Individual Differences, Warsaw, Poland, 2017

International Society for Human Ethology, Stirling, Scotland, 2016

Human Behaviour and Evolutionary Society, Vancouver, Canada, 2016

North-Eastern Evolutionary Psychology Society, St Mary's University, Halifax, Canada, 2016

North-Eastern Evolutionary Psychology Society, Suffolk University, 2015

Canadian Psychological Association, Quebec, Canada, 2013

North-Eastern Evolutionary Psychology Society, Lebanon Valley College, USA, 2013

International Society for Human Ethology, University of Vienna, Austria, 2012

North-Eastern Evolutionary Psychology Society, Plymouth State University, USA, 2012

The Centre for Behaviour and Evolution, Newcastle University, UK, 2012


Ad-hoc reviewer for:

Evolutionary Psychology

Journal of Social and Personal Relationships

Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sport

Personality and Individual Differences

Comprehensive Psychiatry

Evolution and Human Behavior


Previously, Gregory has been asked to contribute to programmes or articles for BBC Radio 4, Channel 4, Men’s Health Magazine, WellWed Magazine and Fuscia Magazine and NBC News.


Gregory is available for media contact regarding:

The Dark Triad: narcissism, Machiavellianism, and psychopathy

Gender differences


Evolutionary psychology


Book chapters:

Carter, G. L. (2017). Sex differences in human mate preferences (Buss, 1989). In G. Brewer (Ed.), The Encyclopaedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science.

Carter, G. L. & Fisher, M. L. (2017). Conclusion. In M. L. Fisher (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Women and Competition.

Douglass, M. D. D. & Carter, G. L. (2017) Prostitution. In R. D. Morgan (Ed.), The SAGE Encyclopaedia of Criminal Psychology.

Journal articles:

Carter, G. L., Lyons, M., & Brewer, G. (2018). Lifetime offspring and the Dark Triad. Personality and Individual Differences, 132, 79-83.

Vaughan, R., Carter, G. L., Cockroft, D., & Maggiorini, L. (2018). Harder, better, faster, stronger? Mental toughness, the dark triad and physical activity. Personality and Individual Differences, 131, 206-211.

Brewer, G., Carter, G. L., Lyons, M., & Green, J. (2018). Sensation-seeking in women does not affect their preference for Dark Triad male faces. Personality and Individual Differences, 130, 92-95.

Carter, G. L., Campbell, A. C., Muncer, S., & Carter, K. A. (2015). A Mokken analysis of the Dark Triad ‘Dirty Dozen’: Sex and age differences in scale structures, and issues with individual items. Personality and Individual Differences, 83, 185-191.

Carter, G. L., Montanaro, Z., Linney, C., & Campbell, A. C. (2015). Women’s sexual competition and the Dark Triad. Personality and Individual Differences, 74, 275-279.

Jonason, P. K., Baughman, H. M., Carter, G. L., & Parker, P. (2015). Dorian Gray without his portrait: Psychological, social, and physical health costs associated with the Dark Triad. Personality and Individual Differences, 78, 5-13.

Carter, G. L., Campbell, A. C., & Muncer, S. (2014a). The dark triad personality: Attractiveness to women. Personality and Individual Differences, 56, 57-61.

Carter, G. L., Campbell, A. C., & Muncer, S. (2014b). The Dark Triad: Beyond a ‘male’ mating strategy. Personality and Individual Differences, 56, 159-164.

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