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Dematte et al

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Ruqaiyah Hairon

on 25 August 2014

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Transcript of Dematte et al

Smell &
Physical attractiveness

Dematte et al
to discover whether olfactory cues influence people's judgement of attractiveness
to discover whether pleasant odour cause higher ratings of male attractiveness
to discover whether unpleasant odour cause lower ratings of male attractiveness
Participants/sample :
16 females
oxford university, UK
Av age of 26 years
(20-34 y/o)
Not informed of the aim of the study
Asked to complete questionnaire to ensure
sense of smell
general health
By : Qaiyah hairon
custom built computer
: olfactormeter
used to deliver odourants
& to view male images
40 pre-categorized male-faces used as stimuli
20 high in attractiveness
20 low in attractiveness
4 odours :
body odour
male fragrance
Questionnaire to determine health problems
eg : respiratory
ps sat 70 cm away from computer screen with chin resting a chin rest
ps were instructed to fixate on a cross at the centre of monitor
ps were instructed to start exhaling as soon as they heard a quiet tone
& inhale as soon as they heard a loud tone
1/4 odours or clean air were delivered by olfactormeter 5 second after 'loud tone'
ps are to press a key on the keyboard if they feel theres odour presented
10 seconds after odours were presented, fixation cross were replaced with one of the male faces for 500 milli second.
after face disappear screen turns black, any odours stopped & replaced by clean air
screen remains black for 20 seconds
9 point rating scale appeared on screen
ps are to press a key on the keyboard according to their response.
IS this study generalisable?
ps were checked for normal vision & olfaction (typical
Only few ps used.
Only assumed all female ps were heterosexual.
Didn't ask for menstrual cycle as sense of smell heightens during menstrual.

Lab exp : Strengths
Lab exp : weaknesses
level of control over extraneous variables
use of olfactormeter to elminate other smell that could effect the experiment
easy to replicate
using sme faces, machines & just change the participants to see if it's reliable
ecological validity
doesn't represent real life situation
use of pics not people
use of olfactormenter
in demand characteristics as they know they are participating in an experiment
Easy to draw effect & cause relationship
Quick & allow easy comparisons
Allow statistical analysis to be conducted
Doesn't represent why p found faces either attractive or unattractive
argument that participants may be confused with sense of smell and vision :
vision & smell aren't confused the same way as taste and smell are
odour detected at the beginning and the attractiveness at the end
attractiveness is an ambiguous characteristics of human faces
trials were randomised
presentation of odour was brief to avoid influence of mood
link can be established due to the use of olfactormeter
halo dumping
there was only one scale which can be confusing
unpleasant smell could have distracted participant's attention
it's reliable as the procedures were standardised :
-40 standardised pictures
-used equipment (olfactormeter)

Can be argued not reliable as 9 point rating scale might not be accurate due to the confusion of rating smell and attractiveness
IT's possible that decisions made by ps is affected by biological factors

can also be argued determinist:
doesn't look at other factors.
perceive no difference in attractivness when presented with a pleasant odour compared with a neutral odour
ps rated faces being significantly less attractive with unpleasant odour than when presented with the other 3 odours.
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