gross630: April 2012 Archives

From Psych to Dating

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One concept that I will remember from PSYCH 1001 in five years will be the social influences on interpersonal attraction from chapter 11. This includes the psychologically-tested characteristics and factors that can determine who we are most likely attracted too. I figured that I will remember these concepts in the future because I will most likely be on the dating scene looking for a potential wife after college. Remembering the influences on attraction could help ease the process of finding a mate.

Blog 4.pngIf you do not recall, studies have shown that most relationships develop out of proximity - how often you interact and are around someone on a daily basis. From this idea of proximity, it would seem that I am more likely to date a fellow student in my major or even a coworker. Also, similarity between both partners has been found to be prevalent in most relationships. I will always remember from this class that opposites actually do not attract. Once one is in a relationship, reciprocity, or the rule of give and take, can help move things to a deeper level.

It will be interesting to see how many of the psychology concepts from this semester I will find myself recalling or identifying in my future.

I have often times encountered individuals who tell me that they are good at telling when people are lying. These individuals claim they can tell by looking into someone's eyes or by just having a way of knowing. I was surprised to learn, from our psychology book, that the vast majority of people cannot accurately predict when a person is speaking truthfully or when they are lying.

Much like the explanations of these "human lie detectors," most believe that lying becomes obvious through nonverbal communication. While research shows that illustrators decrease and the use of emblems and manipulators increases when one lies, research also suggests that these nonverbal communication changes are not very consistent. Instead it appears that verbal communication changes more significantly when one lies. Thinking back to times where I have lied, I realize that my amount of details and qualifiers spoken is quite lower than when I speak the truth - just as our book suggests.

Researcher Paul Ekman tested the abilities of supposedly skilled human lie detectors such as police, judges, and psychologists. He found that they could only correctly identify about 60% of liars - an accuracy rate much lower than assumed by the general population, in my opinion. I think people in society need to think more critically about whether or not those working in our legal system have the ability to correctly identify and prosecute liars. I believe more training and education on the communication, body language, and psychology of lying should be a requirement to become a law enforcer. I wonder if "human lie detectors" could be applied to job interviews in order to obtain a more truthful reading on prospective employees.

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