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Journal Article

Imprinting effects on visual attention to faces and judgements of attractiveness

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Preckel, K., & Massar, K. (2014). Imprinting effects on visual attention to faces and judgements of attractiveness. EvoS Journal: The Journal of the Evolutionary Studies Consortium, 6(2), 1-16.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0027-ADB9-8
Previous studies have shown that human mate-choice can be influenced by exposure to opposite-sex parent characteristics. In this study we examined whether there are sexual-imprinting effects of fathers on their daughter’s partner-choice. To this end our participants were asked to bring a picture of their father to the laboratory, and next an eye-tracker was used to determine participants’ gaze directions while they were judging male faces for attractiveness. Participants were single, female undergraduates (n = 50, M age = 22, SD = 2.36), and they were randomly assigned to one of two conditions. They were instructed to judge the stimuli faces on their attractiveness while imagining they were looking either for a short-term (ST) or a long-term (LT) relationship. After calculating percentage differences and similarities between fathers’ faces and the stimuli pictures, the results showed that a sub-sample, which fulfilled imprinting criteria, did rate stimuli pictures with a high father resemblance as significantly more attractive.