Factors Affecting Attraction: Physical Attractiveness - Evaluation

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  • Factor Affecting Attraction: Physical Attractiveness
    • Support for Halo Effect
      • Palmer and Peterson (2012)
      • Found those rated more attractive, were believed to have better political knowledge and be more competent
        • Beliefs will continue, even once attractive people have been proven to have no expertise.
      • There are implications for political system.
        • Danger that politicians will be judged based on how attractive they are - rather than their abilities.
      • FINDINGS
        • Hale effect found to apply in other areas of life - thus confirming physical attractiveness is important in the initiation of relationships.
    • Individual Differences
      • Towhey (1979)
      • Asked female and male participants how much they'd like an individual based on a photograph and biographical information.
        • Participants also answered a questionnaire, measuring their sexist attitudes and behaviours.
          • ADDITIONAL POINT: Self-report techniques are unreliable, as they can have skewed results due to social disability bias.
      • Found that participants who scored highly, were more influenced by physical attractiveness when making a judgement of likeability.
      • FINDINGS
        • Physical attractiveness can be moderated by other factors.
        • Challenges notion that it is a significant consideration in relationship formation for all potential partners.
    • Support for The Matching Hypothesis
      • Walster (1966)
        • Original study failed.
          • Due to measurement of attractiveness not being reliable.
            • LIMITATION: Reduces validity of study.
              • Participants only had a few seconds to rate the images shown.
          • Participants only had a few seconds to rate the images shown.
      • Feingold (1988)
        • Meta-analysis of 17 studies.
        • Found significant correlation in ratings of attractiveness between partners.
          • ADDITIONAL POINTS: Correlation does not equal causation. There may be a third factor affecting the outcomes.
        • FINDINGS
          • SUPPORT: because the studies look at actual partners, which is more realistic.


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