Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 


UC psychology expert studying origins of attraction

UC psychology expert studying origins of attraction

November 3, 2013

A University of Canterbury (UC) psychology expert is trying to understand the origins of personal attraction by studying changes in time perception. 

UC psychology researcher Dr Joana Arantes received $300,000 in Marsden funding this week and wants to know whether changes in time perception occur when seeing an attractive potential mate for the first time, which could be explained by evolutionary pressures our ancestors faced in the past.

``The initial idea for our research came from the popular belief that time seems to slow down or even stop when falling in love at first sight,’’ Dr Arantes says.

``This can be seen depicted in films such as the Tim Burton movie Big Fish and in Taylor Swift’s song Time Slows Down Whenever You’re Around.

``We know from previous research that perceived time can slow down in real-life situations that are threatening, such as car crashes, bungee jumping, or to take a less extreme example that’s been studied in the laboratory, viewing photos of snakes. These changes in time perception, which can be subtle, are mediated by changes in arousal, and have evolved because they increased the likelihood of survival. 

“From an evolutionary perspective, it makes sense that similar changes in time perception would occur in situations related to reproductive fitness, such as unexpectedly seeing an attractive potential mate for the first time.
 
``Of course, this is consistent with the saying about: love at first sight. But when we looked in the scientific literature we found there had been no prior research.

``In our first study, which was recently published in the journal Evolutionary Psychology, female participants viewed photos of attractive and unattractive males and females that were briefly presented on a computer and had to estimate their duration by pressing a mouse button.

``We found that the estimated durations of attractive males were longer than for unattractive males, whereas there was no difference in the estimated durations of attractive and unattractive females. This result supported our prediction that the timing system is sensitive to reproductive fitness.’’

Dr Arantes says the Marsden grant will allow her research team to follow up the initial findings and systematically study the role of time perception in interpersonal attraction. She will use laboratory and realistic methods to explore what happens automatically and instinctively in the cognitive system during interpersonal attraction.

Initial results are not expected until the end of next year.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

August 4: Centenary Of New Zealand Entering The First World War

PM John Key: I move, that this House recognise that on the 4th of August 2014, we will mark the centenary of New Zealand entering the First World War... More>>

ALSO:

Cyclists Net First NZ Gold

New Zealand won a gold meal and two bronzes on the first day of the Commonwealth Games. There was joy and heartbreak in an incredibly full day of sport. Here's how the New Zealanders fared. More>>

Cap Bocage: Anti-Mining Campaign Doco Debuts At NZ Film Festival

Playing at this year’s New Zealand International Film Festival, Cap Bocage is a close-up exploration of the forces that came into play when environmental issues and indigenous rights became intertwined in New Caledonia ... More>>

Film Fest:

More Film:

Sharon Ellis Review: A View From The Bridge

Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge is Circa’s latest big production, it opened on Saturday 19 July and it is a stunning triumph. More>>

Māori Language Week: He Karanga Kia Kaha Ake Te Tīhau Ki Te Reo Māori

The Māori Language Commission wishes to see social media swamped with Māori language tweets and messages for Te Wiki o te Reo Māori using the hashtag #tekupu. More>>

ALSO:

Book Vote: Kiwis Prefer Young Adult & Classics

To compile their Top 100 List for 2014, Whitcoulls again asked New Zealanders to vote for their favourite books and authors. And while classic novels continue to appeal to Kiwi readers, 2014 marks a significant new trend – the increasing popularity of novels for young adults. More>>

ALSO:

Five NZ Cities: Bill Bailey Back To The Southern Hemisphere

The gap between how we imagine our lives to be and how they really are is the subject of Bill’s new show Limboland. With his trademark intelligence and sharp wit, he tells tales of finding himself in this halfway place. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Book Television Is Coming

Carole Beu of The Women’s Bookshop in Auckland, Graham Beattie of The Book Blog and producer Deb Faith of FaceTV have raised enough money via crowd funding at Boosted – just under $7,000 so far – for 12 episodes, which begin production in September, and will be on screen later that month. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Education
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news