Research Studies Relating to Interpersonal Relationships Essay

Research Studies Relating to Interpersonal Relationships Essay

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Research Studies Relating to Interpersonal Relationships


Psychologists as reasons why one individual is attracted to another
have listed a number of factors. Surprisingly proximity is cited as a
major component in the development of relationships. Festinger et al
found in a study of married graduate students, that close friends who
lived in the same building were twice as likely to be living on the
same floor as living on another. All the graduate students had been
assigned their housing randomly therefore this suggests that the
frequency of meetings between individuals has a big effect on the
relationship. Bossard study of marriages in Philidelphia supported
this theory. He found that out of 5000 marriage licenses there was a
clear tendency for the couples to love close together.

The matching hypothesis suggests that people be attracted to those who
match them in terms of intelligence and good looks. A follow up study
to Walster et al's original 'computer dance' supported the matching
hypothesis. In this experiment students were invited to a college
dance where they would be set up with other students at random. When
signing up to the dance all students were graded on physical
attractiveness. Walster and Walster found that if the students meet
beforehand, giving the, more time to think about the qualities they
were looking for in a partner, students tended to like partners who
were the same level of physical attractiveness as them. This supports
the matching hypothesis. Murstein (1972) used photos of couples to
test the matching hypothesis. The findings demonstrated a clear
pattern of similar levels of attractiveness between coup...


... middle of paper ...


...o be used by millions around the
world.

Walster et al tested this hypothesis by inviting students to a dance.
When the students arrived to sign up for the dance four independent
judges marked them on their physical appearance as a measure of social
desirability. The students were then asked to fill out a
questionnaire, two days later the dance was held and students were
randomly paired together. During the dance students were required to
fill out another questionnaire on the dance and their date. The
results showed the less attractive students liked the more physically
attractive students more, this study therefore contradicts the
matching hypothesis. Physical attractiveness was found to be by far
the most important indicator of whether the students would meet up
again, overshadowing personality and intelligence.

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