Interpersonal Perception Lab
New York University, Department of Social Psychology
Tessa V. West
|Welcome to the West Interpersonal Perception Lab!|
In the West Interpersonal Perception Lab, we apply modern methods and approaches to classic interpersonal perception questions. By analyzing dyadic- and group-level interactions, we can explore basic perception questions such as how accurate and biased perceivers are and whether perceivers can be both accurate and biased at the same time. To capture the dynamic interaction between the self and others as found in the real world, much of our work focuses on cross-race interactions (i.e., interactions between Whites and ethnic minorities).
During social interactions, what factors influence how we interpret others’ behaviors?
To what extent do our goals and motivations lead us to “see” in others what we want, or expect, to see?
We are particularly interested in
understanding how goals,
motivations, and expectations influence the meanings that we attach to
interaction partner’s behaviors. We are currently examining whether we
subjects’ goals and motivations to facilitate rapport-building in the
of getting acquainted cross-race interactions. For example, several
ongoing studies address the question: Can we lead perceivers to “see”
partners in ways that are inconsistent with reality?
Coordination and Performance
How can interpersonal perception processes influence behavioral coordination between two or more individuals at the initial stages of an interaction?
How does behavioral coordination change over time, and how do the factors of race and power influence this change?
By bridging the fields of
interpersonal perception and behavioral
coordination, we are developing a line of research on improving dyad
group-level performance in contexts that require individuals to
their behaviors. We are currently developing methods of improving
group-level outcomes in racially heterogeneous dyads and teams. We are
examining these processes in experimental one-time-only interactions,
as within real teams over the course of several months.
To get a feel for how we study these questions in our lab, click on the Video lab link.
(c) Tessa West, 2010
Website by Lindy Gullett