Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Caucasians and Asians don't examine faces in the same way

Date:
January 27, 2010
Source:
University of Montreal
Summary:
Caucasians and Asians don't examine faces in the same way, according to new research.

Caucasians and Asians don't examine faces in the same way, according to new research.
Credit: iStockphoto

Caucasians and Asians don't examine faces in the same way, according to new research. PhD student Caroline Blais, of the Universitι de Montrιal Department of Psychology, has published two studies on the subject: one in Current Biology and the other in PLoS One.

Previous studies have shown that people collect information by mostly studying the eyes as well as the mouth of a face. "The problem is that these studies always used Caucasian test subjects," says Blais.

Questioning the universality of facial recognition began after studies showed that Asians study faces in an overall fashion, while Caucasians break down faces into distinct parts.

Blais used a camera designed to track eye movements to study 14 Caucasian and 14 Asian participants. As part of the experiment, subjects were shown 112 Caucasian and Asian faces and asked to report if they had seen the face before and to name the dominating trait. The study confirmed that Caucasians study the triangle of the eyes and mouth, while Asians focus on the nose.

Caucasian and Asian subjects excelled at recognizing someone of their race, yet both had the same level of difficulty in identifying someone of another ethnic group. According to Blais, this says more about the analytical approach of Caucasians and the holistic approach of Asians.

In a second experiment, test subjects had to pinpoint an emotion: surprise, fear, disgust or joy. Asians mostly focused on the eyes and not enough on the mouth, which meant some emotions were wrongly identified.

"Asians had particular problems with negative emotions. They confused fear and surprise as well as disgust and anger," says Blais. "This is because they avoided looking at the mouth which provides a lot of information about these emotions."

Cultural or biological causes, Blais says, might explain why humans don't read faces in a universal fashion.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Montreal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Montreal. "Caucasians and Asians don't examine faces in the same way." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 January 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100126111953.htm>.
University of Montreal. (2010, January 27). Caucasians and Asians don't examine faces in the same way. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100126111953.htm
University of Montreal. "Caucasians and Asians don't examine faces in the same way." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100126111953.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Treadmill 'trips' May Reduce Falls for Elderly

Treadmill 'trips' May Reduce Falls for Elderly

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) — Scientists are tripping the elderly on purpose in a Chicago lab in an effort to better prevent seniors from falling and injuring themselves in real life. (Aug.28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Alice in Wonderland Syndrome

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) — It’s an unusual condition with a colorful name. Kids with “Alice in Wonderland” syndrome see sudden distortions in objects they’re looking at or their own bodies appear to change size, a lot like the main character in the Lewis Carroll story. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stopping Schizophrenia Before Birth

Stopping Schizophrenia Before Birth

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) — Scientists have long called choline a “brain booster” essential for human development. Not only does it aid in memory and learning, researchers now believe choline could help prevent mental illness. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Personalized Brain Vaccine for Glioblastoma

Personalized Brain Vaccine for Glioblastoma

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) — Glioblastoma is the most common and aggressive brain cancer in humans. Now a new treatment using the patient’s own tumor could help slow down its progression and help patients live longer. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins