AQA Psychology - Relationships


8.1 Evolutionary explanations for partner preferen

Buss (1989): Procedure - 10,000 people, 37 cultures, asked to rate 18 characterisitcs on importance of choosing mate, scale 0-3, irrevelent to indispensible used Findings - women more than men disired 'good financial prospects', therefore resources, men focused more on physical attractivenss, there reproductive value, men wanted younger women, therefore increased fertility, both sexes wanted intellect and kindness. 

Nature of sexual selection: Intrasexual selection - one sex outcompetes other memebers for access to other sex, if successful they pass on genes, characteristics they make them able to win become widesprread in gene pool Intersexual selection - one sex perferences qualities in mates, those obtaining these gain mating advantage, therefore preferences determine areas in which other sex must compete Sexual selection and long-term mate pererences - pays to be choosy for high-quality offspring, femals attraction to males who have are resourful, able to physically protect, good parenting ability, sufficiently compatible, males attracted to females who display signed of fertility and indication of reproductive value

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8.2 Physical attractiveness - A01

The 'matching hypothesis': Walster & Walster (1969) claiming individuals seek partners whose social desirability matches own, so they assess own 'value', then select best candidates that'd be attracted to them, by this partners can maximise chances of success Matching and physical attractiveness - the hypothesis has been assosiated with physical attractivness alone, expecting pairs to match on rating, Walster called these 'realistic' choices, these consider persons desires, liklihood of other wanting them, and whether other as desirable alternatie, therefore people settle 'within their league' 

Walster et al. (1996): Procedure - held 'computer dance', 177 males 170 females, rated on physical attractiveness and completed questionnaire on personality, told this was for ideal partner allocation, pairing actually random, during intermission they completed questionnaire about partner and follow-up six months later Findings - despite themselves, they responsed more positively to physically attractive dates and were more likely to arrange dates, personality and intelligence had zero influence

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8.3 Self disclosure - A01

Sprecher et al. (2013): Procedure - 156 students paired, two thirds were female-female other male-female, engaged in self-disclosure over skype, reciprocal condition, and non-reciprical then they swithced roles Findings - those in reciprical condition reported more liking, closeness, percieved similarity and enjoyment of interaction than non-reciprical condition, shows turn taking self-disclosure is more likely to lead to positive interpersonal outcomes

Self-disclousre: Research - Specher studied 50 couples, found amount of discusre in relationship was predictive of whether couple stayed together for longer than four years Different types of self-disclosure - Speacher (1987) found disclosure of dissapointments, accomplishmentsm and previous sexual relationships had greater influence on relationship satisfaction than 'neutral' topics Norms of self-disclousre - Berg & Archer (1980) found evidence that people possess norm of reciprocity concerning self-disclosure, they expect what they give in return. 

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8.4 Filter theory - A01

Kerckhoff & Davis (1962): Procedure - 94 couples completed questionnaire assessing attitudes social demograph, similarity in attititudes, and complementarity of needs, then took post 7 month questionnaire assesing how close they felt to partner compares to beginning of study Findings - initial analysis showed similarity in attitudes linked to closeness, when couple split into short-term, under 18 months, for short-term couples similarity in attidues was most significant predictor in closeness, for long-term this was complimentarity of needs. 

Filter theory: Social demgraphy - refers to variables such as age, social background and location, which determine liklihood of individuals meeting, these similarites make us initall find them attractive Similarity in attitudes - if people share similar attitudes, variabees and beliefs, communication is easier and so a relationship is more likley to progress Complimentartiy of needs - refers to how well two people fit together as couple and meet eeach other's need, those with complimentary rather then similar needs work better, (Winch, 1958). 

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8.5 Social exchange theory - A01

Kurdek & Schmitt (1986): Procedure - investigating social exchange factors, 185 couples, 44 straight married, 35 straight unmarried, 50 gay, 56 lesbian. Findings - greater relationship satisfaction assosiated with CL, and CLA, this shows that satisfaction in same-sex couples is the same in heterosexual couples. 

Social exchange theory: Profit and loss - commitment to a relationship is dependment on profitability of the outcome. Comparison level - product of our experiences and general views, if profit exceeds CL then partner is attractive, best outcome if both partners profit exceeds their CL. Comparison level for alternaties - new relationship can replace current if periceved profits higher, partners who differ in their degree of dependence on the reltionship experience distress because one or both of them lack commitment. 

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8.6 Equity theory - A01

Stafford & Canary (2006): interest in how equity theory predicted marriage maintenence, asked 200 couples to complete measures of equity and relationship satisfaction, and each spouse asked about their use of maintenence strategies Findings - satisfaction highest for spouses who percieved relationship as equitable, followed by over-benefited then under, husbands reported lack of strategies if they felt under-benefited, complementary relationship between equity and happiness.

Equity: Inequity and dissatifaction - people most comfortable when getting what they percieve they deserve, if over-benefitted people feel pity, guilt, shame and if under they feel anger, sadness, resentment, the greater the inequity the greater the dissatisfaction. A timetable of equity and inequity in marriages - Scafer & Keith (1980) found during child-rearing years wives felt under and husbands over, during honeymoon felt equitable. Hatfield and Rapson (2011) suggest people for conerned about equity at begginning, rather than once they've become deeply committed, happily married. 

Dealing with inequity: 1. Restore actual equity 2. Restore psychological equity 3. Leave relationship

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8.7 The investment model of relationships - A01

Investment model: Satisfaction level - extent to which partner fufills individual's most important needs Quality of alternatives - assessmen of whether needs might be better fufuilled by somebody other than current partner Investment size - measure of resources attached to relationship, which would be lost if relationship ended. Commitment level - liklihood of persistance with relationship, product of satisfaction, low quality of alternatives and investment. 

Le & Agnew (2003): Procedure - meta-analysis of 52 studies, betwen 1970s and 90s, 11,000 total participants, 54% males and 46% female, USA, UK, Netherlands, Israel and Taiwann. Findings - 3 factors of invesment model highly correlated with commitment, correlation between satisfaction and commitment .68, quality of alternative -.48, investment size .46.

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8.8 Relationship breakdown - A01

Phase model of relationship breakdown: Breakdown - Duck's (1982) model begins with one partner becoming distressed due to dissatisfaction. Intrapsychic phase - feels resentment, focuses on partners flaws, costs, and alternatives, doesn't express dissatifaction. Dyadic phase - discuss dissatifaction and future of relationship, if both partners motivated to fix then breakup is avoided. Social phase - dissatifaction spills over to social network, can't deny problem anymore, breakup becomes inevitable. Grave-dressing phase - interpreting relationship in favourable way of individual,for social credit. 

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8.9 Virtual relationships in social media - A01

'Strangers on a train', Rubin (1970s): found when individuals disclose to strangers this was met by reciprical self-disclosure by stranger. 

Self-disclosure in virtual relationships: people share more online due to lack of ridicule or rejection that could be recieved face-to-face, we disclose to strangers due to lack of access to social circle.

Absense of gating in virtual relationships: Gating in face-to-face relationships - 'gates' that limit opportunies  for less attactive, shy, and less social skilled aren't online. Absence of gating and consequences - lack of gating increases likely of persons true self being active, this can establish relationships over the internet. Zhao et al (2008) found lack of gating empowers individuals online that enable them to strech truth to present more socially desirable identity. Yurchisin et al. (2005) - interviewed 11 online daters, they gave accounts of real and better selves in profiles to attract potentials, some stole others ideas and pictures to improve popularity, Yurchisin found most online identities were pretty close to true identities. 

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8.10 Parasocial relationships - A01

An attachment theory explanation: Attachment behaviours: Proximity seeking - reducing distance between selves and attachment figure. Secure base - presence of attachment figure provides sense of security, lack of chance of rejection. Protest at disruption - best marker of attachment is distress due to seperation. Attachment style: Cole & Leets (1999) found liklihood of entering PSR is dependent on attachment type, insecure-avoidants were most likely, they thought these people turned to the famous to fufill unrelistic needs,avoidant individuals least likley to enter any relationship, including PSRs. 

The absorption addition model: The  nature of parasocial relationships: likely to form if individual percieves celevirtiy as similar and attractive, those who go far in PSRs use the Celebrity Attitude Scale (CAS), the three levels of this process are: Entertainment social - fans attracted to celebrity and keep up to date, Intense-personal - deeper lvevel of involvement, join fandom, Borderline-pathological - they identify with celebrities success and failures and fantasise about their lives. From absorption to addiction: Lange et al. suggests introverted nature can lead to absorption by lives of parasocial friends, absorption is effortless, if this level is high enough it leads to addiction, remain addicted due to incresingly stronger involvement that's required to remain connected. 

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8.1 Evolutionary explanations for partner preferen

Cultural traditions: Berstein (2015) says gender differences in preference characterisitcs comes from cultural tradition not evolution, Kasser & Sharma (1999) showed women valued resources more in cultures where women's status and educational opportunities were limited. 

Female perferences not universal: Buller (2005) claims evidence for women wanting high-status men comes from undergraduates, so their preference comes from their lifestyle, so it's not universal. 

Mate choice in real life: Buss' study suffers with validity, as it expresses perference not real lifee, a real-life study by Buss (1989) of married couples doesn't show younger women prefrence, Buss' survey may be more valid then marriages though for countries with arranged marriages. 

Menstrual cycle: Penton-Voak et al. (1999) suggests women prefer feminine faces, shows kindness and cooperation, when they can concieve versus a masculine face, better genetics, at time of conception. 

Human equivalent to peacock's tail?: Nettle & Clegg (2006) found British poets and artists have more sexual partners then those in non-creative professions, suggests females attracted to creativity for offspring. 

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8.2 Physical attractiveness - A03

Speed dating and traditional views: Eastwink & Finkel (2008) found males prefere physical attractivenes and women earning prospects, however speed dating showed no sex differences in these characteristics on interest in partner. 

Complex matching: Sprecher & Hatfield (2009) suggests failure of evidence for 'matching hypothesis' is due to 'complex matching', individuals over compensate in over areas if they lack attractiveness so attract more attractive partners. 

Research support for importance of physical-attractiveness: Meltzer et al. (2014) found husbands were more satisified with attractive wives and beginning and 4 years into marriages, and womens satisfaction wasn't attractiveness dependent. 

Matching may not be important initially: Taylor et al. (2011) found in study of online dating patterns that there was no preference for partners matching in physical attractiveness but those who were more physically attractive, although those who targetting similarly recieved more responses. 

Implications of physical attractiveness preference: Meltzer et al. (2014) claims if it means more to men, then women feel pressure to remain attractive to maintain long-term relationship. 

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8.3 Self disclosure - A01

Research support for importance: Collins & Millar (1994) support role of self-disclosure in development and relationship maintenece, higher disclosures were more liked, and people like others they've disclosed to, also founder stronger liking if recipient of disclosure thought they were the only recipient. 

Internet: 'boom and bust' phenomenon: researchres suggest online relationships involve higher self-disclosure and attraction due to psychological comfort that comes with anonymity, Cooper & Sportolari (1997) revealing more then they would face-to-face, (boom), lack of trust and true knowledge doesn't support relationship, (bust). 

Norms of self disclosure: Tal-Or & Hershman-Shitrit (2015) showed perference of gradual self-disclosure and attraction applies also with reality TV contestents, Big Brother has intimate self-disclosure from begining, which contradicts to real life, views liked characters that disclosed from start but perfered gradual. 

Self-disclosure may be greater face-to-face: Knop et al. (2016) found social group disclosed more face-to-face, they suggests this is due to lack of eye contact and attentive silence online. 

Cultural differences: Nakanishi (1986) found Japanese women prefer lower level personal conversation to men, this is opposite to Western patterns. 

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8.4 Filter theory - A03

Lack of research: Levinger et al. (1970) failed o replicate results of Kerckhoff & Davis (1962), no relationship between relationship length and variables, suggests this could be due to the questionnaire no longer being socially appropriate. 

Real value: Duck (1973) suggests people use filters to make predictions about their future, the filters allow them to determined how deeply involved they become, it stops people making bad deicisions, so they avoid consequences. 

Percieved similarity more important than actual: Tidwell et al. (2013) testing this with speed dating, measured percieved and actual similarity with questionnaire, then found percieved predicted romantic liking for these couples. 

Complementarity of needs not important: Dijkstra & Barelds (2008) studied 760 college studies on dating website, partcipants personalities and characterisitics for ideal mates were measured, stronger correlation between own personality then ideal partner, supports attraction more. 

A problem: peoples attitudes are always changing, Thornton & Young-DeMarco (2001) found evidence for changed attitudes in young Americans over a few decades on: imperative to marry, have children and more relaxed on egalitarian attitudes. 

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8.5 Social exchange theory - A03

Evidence for comparision level for alternatives: Specher (2001) studied 101 dating couples at US uni, found alternatives negatively correlated with commitment and satisfaction, those who lack alternatives remain commited and those commited devalue alternatives. 

Problems of costs and benefits: reward to one person may be cost to other, benefit at one stage of relationship may be cost at another, Littlejohn (1989), therefore difficult to classify all events 

Problem of assessing value: Nakonezyny & Denton (2008) for social exchange theory to work there must be way to quantify value of costs and benefits, the vagueness makes it difficult assessing personal relationships. 

Overemphasis on costs and benefits:individuals own beliefs may make person tolerant to low ratio of costs to benefits, therefore social exchange cannot explain relationship satisfaction without consideration of differences in standards and beliefs. 

Real-world application - Therapy: Gottman & Levenson (1992) found in successful marriages the positive to negative exchanges was 5:1 and in unsuccessful 1:1, goals of IBCT is to increase proportion, this increases happiness. Christensen et al. (2004) treated 2/3 couples successfully with IBCT. 

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8.6 Equity theory - A03

Equity sensistivity: based of 'norm of equity', Huseman et al. (1987) developed benevolent, equity sensitives, and entitleds, givers, norm, receivers. 

Gender differences: DeMaris et al. (2010) found men and women not equally affected by inequity, women more sensitive, Specher (1992) women feel more guilt when over-benefitted

Cultural differences: Aumer-Ryan et al. (2006) found all cultures wanted equity but US couples claimed to be in equitable relationships and Jamaican couple unequitable. 

Supporting evidence from non-human primates: Bronson & de Waal (2003) found female monkey angry when denied prized grapes, if other monkey recieved them they threw food at experimenter. Bronson et al. (2005) found chimpanzees more unset by injustice in causal relationships than intimate ones. 

A problem of causality: Clark (1984) claimed dissatifaction cause not consequence of inequity. Van Yperen & Buunk (1990) found married couples become dissatisfied over a year with no reason. Hatfield & Rapson (2011) suggests when marriages failing partners focus on inequity can lead to dissolution. 

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8.7 The investment model of relationships - A03

Research support: Le et al. (2010) meta-analysis 38,000 participants, 137 studies, 33 year period, to discover variables that predicited 'staying or leaving',non-marital couples, commitment strong variable, others variable were modest predictors. 

Problems in measuring variables: Rusbult et al. (1998) invented 'Investment model scale' to measure variables, high reliability and validity, and multi-cultural, however it relies on self-report, could be biased. 

Real-world application: Explaining abusive relationships: large investment keeps abusive victims in relationships, however Martz (1995) found alternatives and investments were strong indication of whether battered women at shelter remained commited or not. 

Investment in future is also important: Goodfriend & Agnew (2008) says investment size should include future plans, as those are losed with relationship termination, therefore relationships persist because of motivation for future plans, their research supports this. 

The wide application of investment model: Rusbult's model is applicable across countries and cultures, in many relationship types, for example US, Netherlands, Taiwan, in martial, non-marital, gay, lesbian, friendships and abusive relationships. 

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8.8 Relationship breakdown - A03

Fails to reflect personal growth: Duck (2006) added phase of 'resurrection processes', Faizer (2003) survered 92 undergrads who recently had breakup, they reported emotional distress and personal growth. 

Impact of social phase varies by relationship type: Duck (2005) suggests nature and impact of social phase changes the older the couples, if teenage couple broke-up there's less reconcilliation because it wasn't for the long-run but adult couples has less chance of finding replacement, so consequences more significant, socail phase therefore has more attemps of rescue for adults. 

Benefits of grave-dressing phase: Monroe et al (1999) found end of relationship can lead to depression, Tashiro & Frazier (2003) found individual feel better if they blame situation not selves, grave-dressing allows this. 

Ethical issues: benefits on conducting research must outweigh risks, guiding principle, difficult when researching breakups. 

Real-world application - Implications for intervention: different actions taken dependent on phase, intraphysic phase require reevaluation for repair, social phase requires other to help. 

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8.9 Virtual relationships in social media - A03

Importance of internet in romantic relationships: Rosenfield & Thomas (2012), study of 4,000 US adults, found 71.8% of those with internet hd relationship, and 35.9% without internet had relationship. 

Virtual relationships can be as strong as offline relationships: Putnam (2000) believed online relationships are lower quality, Rosenfield & Thomas (2012) found no difference. 

Bioligical basis for self-diclosure on Facebook: Tamir & Mitchell (2012) found two brain areas assosiated with reward had increased MRI activity when people spoke about selves, versus someone else, more pleasure when sharing with family/friend versus being thoughts being private. Tendency to share on social media comes from reward. 

Facebook helps shy people have better quality friendships: Baker & Oswald (2010) surveyed 207 male and female students about shyness, Facebook usage and quality of friendships, those with low shyness didn't have Facebook assosiated with friendship quality, and high shyness did. 

Virtual relationship have consequences for offline relationships: Zhae et al. (2008) claimed development of virtual relationships allows individuals to bypass gating obstacles and create identity that they can't offline, better 'digital selves' enchance self-image and may increase connecting to others in offline world. 

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3.10 The influence of early attachment - A03

Research support for factors in parasocial relationships: Schiappa et al. (2007) meta-analysis explored PSRs factors, more television meant high PSRs levels, correlation between degree of percieved realness of character and PSRs, and liklihood of PRS linked to percieved attractivenss and similarity.                                                                                            

Linked to lonliness?:Eyal & Cohen (2006) found that intensity of PSR with Friends member was dependent for feelings of lonliness following last epiosode.                                        

The absorption addiction model - Links to mental health: Maltby et al. (2003) used Eysenck Personality Questionnaire to assess relationship between PSR and personality, found entertainment-social level assosiated with extraversion, intense-personal level assosiated with neuroticism, this links to anxiety and depression providing explanation of PSRs with low mental health.                                                                                                                          

Loss of parasocial relationship is linked to attachment style: Cohen (2004) found evidence for loss of PSR has same negative response as loss of real relationship, 3811 adults completed questionnaires, include favourite TV character and reaction to if they were taken off air, and attachment styles. They had negative reactions, anxious-ambivalently attachment had most negative response.                                                                                                   

Cultural similarites in parasocial relationships:Schmid & Klimmt (2011) found German's and Mexican's had similar PSRs with Harry Potter characters, despite Germany's individual culture, and Mexico's collectivist, demonstrating unversal influence of the mainstream. 

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