Descriptive Adjectives of Personality and Their Effects on Perception Juliette Metelus
St. Thomas University
The goal of this experiment was to examine rather a) “warm/cold” central trait groups differed the perception participants have of given stimulus persons “Adam/Alice” based on a written biography, and b) if gender of the stimulus person manipulated the variable, and c) if the non-manipulated gender of the participants responded different to the same variable. The description was given to 30 college students, (14) females and (16) males, who contained information that described the stimulus person either, “Adam” (male) or “Alice” (female), as a warm person or rather a cold person, and was then given a questionnaire. The results of a number of studies in the area of person perception suggest that an experimenters’ description of a stimulus can affect how that stimulus is remembered and evaluated (Higgins, Jones, & Rholes, 1977). This present study revealed that A) when “Adam” was described as warm, he was rated as friendlier, more effective as a leader of a social group, and more likely to be included in a social group, B) when described as cold the stimulus person was rated as more effective as a leader of a work group and a social group. According to this study, participates revealed that trait characteristics of an effective leader as being cold, intelligent, skillful, industrious, determine, practical, and cautious. In early studies done by Asch, the central tenet of this research is that particular information we have about a person, namely the traits we believe they possess, is the most important factor in establishing our overall impression of that person (Asch, 1946).
Key words: condition, manipulated, participants, questionnaire, perception
Descriptive Adjectives of Personality and Their Effects on Perception
How long does it take for you to form a first impression of someone? Two minutes? Three? Or closer to two or three seconds? They are the basis of how relationships start and how you are seen by other people. People base their opinions of others on their first impressions. These opinions could begin many things and lead towards success or these opinions could be ones that are misleading and have a negative impact on how people relate to you. First impressions are a very important aspect of people’s social life, in your education and in employment. A first impression is more than just a moment of interaction, but is a bundle of categorizing characteristic traits which immediately reflects from a stimulus person and gets integrated into our memory. This integrated memory is information that is later used to form a basis of judgments. In this study, the same reaction was invoked but instead a brief description of a stimulus person was read. The surveyed college participants were given two groups of a brief description of stimulus persons, Adam/Alice, in WARM/COLD conditions. In group 1, “Adam” was described in a written biography as “politically middle-of-the-road, intelligent, skillful, industrious, WARM, practical, and cautious”; “Alice” was described as “politically middle-of-the-road, intelligent, skillful, industrious, COLD, practical, and cautious”. In group 2, “Adam” was described in a written biography as “politically middle-of-the-road, intelligent, skillful, industrious, COLD, practical, and cautious”; and “Alice” was described in a written biography as “politically middle-of-the-road, intelligent, skillful, industrious, WARM, practical, and cautious”. The researchers manipulated one word in the adjective list by inserting either the word “WARM” for (Group 1) or “COLD” for (Group 2) in the biography. A total of 30 undergraduate college students, (16) males and (14) females were asked to rate Adam/Alice’s friendliness, team doing related task, willingness to include him in a social group, as well as ratings of his perceived work efficiency per group. The results...
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