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Nicolas Dupuis-Roy, Isabelle Fortin, Daniel Fiset, Frédéric Gosselin; Uncovering gender discrimination cues in a realistic setting. Journal of Vision 2009;9(2):10. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/9.2.10.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Which face cues do we use for gender discrimination? Few studies have tried to answer this question and the few that have tried typically used only a small set of grayscale stimuli, often distorted and presented a large number of times. Here, we reassessed the importance of facial cues for gender discrimination in a more realistic setting. We applied Bubbles—a technique that minimizes bias toward specific facial features and does not necessitate the distortion of stimuli—to a set of 300 color photographs of Caucasian faces, each presented only once to 30 participants. Results show that the region of the eyes and the eyebrows—probably in the light-dark channel—is the most important facial cue for accurate gender discrimination; and that the mouth region is driving fast correct responses (but not fast incorrect responses)—the gender discrimination information in the mouth region is concentrated in the red-green color channel. Together, these results suggest that, when color is informative in the mouth region, humans use it and respond rapidly; and, when it's not informative, they have to rely on the more robust but more sluggish luminance information in the eye-eyebrow region.
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