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You say you don't care about dating a hottie?
Date:1/5/2012

study include Alice H. Eagly, professor of psychology and faculty fellow in the Institute for Policy Research at Northwestern, and Sarah E. Johnson, a doctoral graduate of Northwestern.

"In many cases, people's consciously stated attitudes and preferences predict their behavior quite well," Eagly said. "But in the case of attraction, people's implicit, unconscious preferences seem to do a better job."

A number of psychology studies reveal a disconnect between stated preferences for partners and actual choices. Most of the studies use explicit measures in which people consciously report what appeals to them in a partner. In this new study, the implicit measure that the researchers developed predicted how much the participants liked physically attractive potential partners, both at a speed-dating event and in a face-to-face interaction in the laboratory.

"People's reports of why they like certain partners might not be especially accurate," Eastwick said. "But that doesn't mean that romantic desire is random. The reasons might still be there, hovering just outside of conscious awareness."

The study, "Implicit and Explicit Preferences for Physical Attractiveness in a Romantic Partner: A Double Dissociation in Predictive Validity," appeared in the November issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.


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Contact: Hilary Hurd Anyaso
h-anyaso@northwestern.edu
847-491-4887
Northwestern University
Source:Eurekalert

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