FORMATION - Matching Hypothesis

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FORMATION - Matching Hypothesis


  • ppl ml to become involved if matched in their ability to reward each other in terms of physical attractiveness
  • happier with partners who we feel won't reject us rather than one we desire
  • Hatfield - we choose ppl with same level of social desirability
  • influenced by what we want and what we can get, making realistic choices based on chance of affection being reciprocated


  • TOP AGAINST Walster Computer Dance Study - 752 freshers by tickets for a dance, fill out q's and are matched with ideal date (actually randomly allocated) -unseen observer rates each persons attractiveness, after 2.5 hrs freshers rated dates on attractiveness
  • FINDINGS - physical attractiveness was v important in how much each student liked their partner, m students ml to ask higher rated females out, regardless of own attractiveness
  • TAIL - did not go for ppl with same level of social desirability, went for more attractive and ignored personality however could be bcus no fear of rejection
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FORMATION - Matching Hypothesis AO3

  • TOP FOR Murstein (1972) - aimed to retest with more ecologically valid methods, used photos of 197 couples in various stages of relationship (casual to married) and got 8 judges to rate them on attractiveness without knowing who was with who, ratings were similar for each couple
  • TAIL people who are similarly attractive are in relationships because they go for who they can realistically get


  • Walster - lacked ecological validity, used only students who are more likely to have superficial relationships?, didn't take into account possibility of rejection
  • Murstein - real relationships, high inter rater reliability
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