August 2009
Volume 9, Issue 8
Free
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   August 2009
Sensitivity to posed versus genuine expressions: Are children easily fooled?
Author Affiliations
  • Danielle Longfield
    Brock University, St. Catharines, ON
  • Kendra Thomson
    University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB
  • Catherine Mondloch
    Brock University, St. Catharines, ON
Journal of Vision August 2009, Vol.9, 481. doi:10.1167/9.8.481
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      Danielle Longfield, Kendra Thomson, Catherine Mondloch; Sensitivity to posed versus genuine expressions: Are children easily fooled?. Journal of Vision 2009;9(8):481. doi: 10.1167/9.8.481.

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Abstract

Adults are sensitive to the authenticity of facial expressions. They evaluate t-shirts more positively when worn by a model displaying a genuine smile than a posed smile or a neutral expression (Peace et al., 2006). They are more likely to say that a model displaying genuine happiness is feeling happy than a model displaying posed happiness, but fail to recognize that an expression is posed about 50% of the time (Miles & Johnson, 2007). We conducted two experiments to determine whether children are sensitive to the authenticity of facial expressions. In Experiment 1, 7-year-olds and adults (n=48 per group) first ranked 6 beach balls held by a female model displaying genuine happiness, posed happiness, or a neutral expression (n = 2 balls per expression) in order of preference. In a subsequent show/feel task, participants indicated whether each of 12 models displaying genuine happiness, posed happiness, or a neutral expression (n = 4 per expression) was showing happy and whether each was feeling happy. Both 7-year-olds and adults reported that genuine models were feeling happy more often than posed models (p p [[gt]] .20), perhaps because they failed to attend to the faces. In Experiment 2, we initially covered the 6 beach balls in the ranking task to ensure that the children viewed the faces prior to ranking the beach balls. Data to date (28 7-year-olds, 22 9-year-olds) indicates that, like adults, children rank beach balls paired with genuine expressions more favorably than beach balls paired with posed or neutral expressions, p p [[gt]] .5. We conclude that by age 7 years, children are sensitive to the authenticity of expressions and that this sensitivity can influence their evaluation of products.

Longfield, D. Thomson, K. Mondloch, C. (2009). Sensitivity to posed versus genuine expressions: Are children easily fooled? [Abstract]. Journal of Vision, 9(8):481, 481a, http://journalofvision.org/9/8/481/, doi:10.1167/9.8.481. [CrossRef]
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