Big Job Interview Coming Up?...

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Do looks really matter when being interviewed? The researchers at Rice University believe so. "Discrimination Against Facially Stigmatized Applicants in Interviews: An Eye-Tracking and Face-to-Face Investigation" was published online last month in the Journal of Applied Psychology and is one of the first studies to examine how individuals with facial blemishes fare in job interviews. The main focus of these tests surrounded the idea that the most important thing to do, that is, from and interviewers perspective, is to remember what the candidate is saying. That it is most important for them to stick out, but solely because of their words. Rice professor Mikki Hebl said that their research shows that if you recall less information about competent candidates because you are distracted by characteristics on their face, it decreases your overall evaluations on them due to the lack of attention to the words exchanged during the interview.
The research included two studies. The first involved 171 undergraduate students watching a computer-mediated interview while their eye activity was tracked consistently. After the completion of the interview each student was asked to recall general information about the candidate.
One professor states that, "when looking at another person during a conversation, your attention is naturally directed in a triangular pattern around the eyes and mouth...we tracked the amount of attention outside of this region and found that the more the interviewers attended to stigmatized features on the face, the less they remembered about the candidate's interview content, and the less memory they had about the content led to decreases in ratings of the applicant."
The second study consisted of face-to-face interviews with candidates who all had some type of facial birthmark and 38 managers enrolled in a hospitality management program, all who had extensive experience and training for classic one on one interviews. The bottom line is that no matter what the norm is and what each person's standards are, initially, and unfortunately, it is human nature to react negatively to facial stigma. The researchers main point was that since there have been many studies showing specific groups of people are discriminated against in the workplace, they however, have shown why it happens.

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This page contains a single entry by blum0202 published on November 20, 2011 5:43 PM.

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