affects the impact of central traits on impression formation, The In sum, the results of the ranking data do not provide evidence for a primacy-of-warmth effect: intelligence, not warmth, was the primary determinant of participant’s impressions of personality. Ample research suggests that warmth is often primary over competence in people’s impressions of others (e.g., Fiske et al., 2007; Wojciszke, 2005), and Asch’s classic warm-cold study often is one of the first and foremost references for this effect. Asch’s (1946) theorizing and the results of his Study IV do not support the primacy-of-warmth effect; the reason why he has been widely cited as the progenitor of this effect is because of his first study (Study I, or the classic warm-cold study). A Dictionary of Sociology first impressions ) Mental summaries based on repeated observations others' behaviors ( abstractions , increases as you gain experience with person ) Of 1,140 participants, 117 were removed because English was not their native language or because they failed to pass an instructional manipulation check (Oppenheimer, Meyvis, & Davidenko, 2009). Importantly, the centrality of warm and cold in Conditions 1 and 2 was even more absent in Conditions 3, 4, and 5, in accordance with Asch’s hypothesis (1946) that the centrality of warmth is context-dependent. Social perception, impression formation, attribution, and social-cognitive biases are important and essential components to most college introductory social psychology courses . A social psychological term referring to the way in which strangers develop perceptions of each other. I decided to embark on a (very nerdy) adventure exploring Asch’s data. Because Asch ran his experiments almost 70 years ago, he reported his results as the percentages of people who endorsed a given trait in their sketch. warm-cold variable in impression formation: Evidence for the positive-negative research: S. N., I. H. Analyzed data: S. N., O. L., I. H. Wrote paper: S. N., O. Asch’s qualitative methods led him to commit a Type II error, failing to recognize a difference between conditions when one existed. Your total impression is a series of … According to Asch (1946), warm and cold should be central in Conditions 1 and 2 when accompanied by traits like intelligent, skillful, industrious, determined, practical, and cautious (original Study I), but not in Conditions 3–5 when accompanied by traits like obedient, weak, shallow, unambitious, and vain (original Study IV). The Additional Findings contain additional analyses that have no direct relevance to the primacy-of-warmth effect, but are related to Asch’s hypotheses (1946) about the process underlying the above mentioned change in valence (pitting a change-in-meaning-effect, e.g., Hamilton & Zanna, 1974; Zanna & Hamilton, 1977, against a simple Halo-effect). It could be argued that Asch’s studies (1946) were not optimally designed to capture a primacy-of-warmth effect. Checklist (Trait-Pair Choice Measure) as Used in, Behavioural Science Institute, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands, Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany, The bigger one of the “Big Two”? What are these conditions? The two major theories of impression formation - Asch's theory of impression formation and the information integration theory are applied to explain the sharply contrasting scholarly views held about impression formation but one noteworthy concern is that they both offer accurate explanations of how both the externalities and internalities affect our impression before others. contribution of linguistic factors to attribute inferences and semantic Asch’s seminal research on “Forming Impressions of Personality” (1946) has widely been cited as providing evidence for a primacy-of-warmth effect, suggesting that warmth-related judgments have a stronger influence on impressions of personality than competence-related judgments (e.g., Fiske, Cuddy, & Glick, 2007; Wojciszke, 2005). analysis, Association for Computational IMPRESSION FORMATION IN SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY. The independence of evaluation and item information: Impression and recall order effects in behavior-based impression formation. The dictionary we used contains the valence (positive, negative, or neutral) of 8,220 words in the English language. However, even when taking the inferred traits into account (instead of limiting our search to the words warm and cold), we did not find evidence for primacy-of-warmth. For the trait-pair choice measure, participants chose which trait (out of a pair) was most applicable to the target. In Condition 2, cold versus intelligent were mentioned equally often, F < 1, with means of 0.27 and 0.24, respectively. Tables 4 – 8 contain the average ranks for all remaining experimental conditions. The plan followed in the experiments to be reported was to read to the subject a number of discrete characteristics, said to belong to a person, with the instruction to describe the impression he formed. In the present replication attempt, we aimed to critically examine the extent to which Asch’s seminal “Forming impressions of personality” (1946) provides evidence for a primacy-of-warmth effect. Framework Ever since Asch (1946) established many of the foundational principles of impression formation one being that impression formation is an organized process – Asch goes on to identify 3 others. Before demonstrating that normative pressure can lead people to lie, Asch was one of the foremost researchers on impression formation. Though this effect has been replicated repeatedly (e.g., Mensh & Wishner, 1947; Veness & Brierley, 1963; Semin, 1989), it may not provide the most stringent test of the primacy-of-warmth hypothesis, as changing any positive trait into a negative one is likely to influence the overall valence of the trait-list. The warm-cold dimension played an important (though not primary) role in determining participant’s impressions when accompanied by traits such as intelligent, skillful, industrious, determined, practical, and cautious (Condition 1), but it became entirely peripheral in the context of other traits (Conditions 3 through 5). impression formation A social psychological term referring to the way in which strangers develop perceptions of each other. Only 19.5% of participants ranked warm as the most important trait in determining their impression, whereas 55.3% ranked intelligent as the most important trait. Further, both were mentioned more frequently than any other trait (means between 0.01 and 0.11, all Fs > 6.32, all ps < .05, all η p 2’s = .04–.06). Google Scholar | Crossref | ISI Solomon Asch may be best known in social psychology for his 1951 Conformity Studies in which he brought participants into a room with seven confederates— actors pretending to be other participants—and had them recount the length of a line. In fact, the rank frequencies for warmth did not significantly differ from a flat distribution, X 2(2, N = 159) = 7.11, p = .31, suggesting that warmth did not receive higher (or lower) rankings than could be expected based on chance alone. Before demonstrating that normative pressure can lead people to lie, Asch was one of the foremost researchers on impression formation. If the warm-cold dimension was at the heart of participants’ impressions, warm and cold should be mentioned more often in their descriptions of the target person than any other trait from the presented lists. Asch concluded that individuals form dynamic impressions of others, based on more valenced or important character traits first with supporting or peripheral traits given lesser weight. Fourth, the study proposal and materials were preregistered. Impression formation is a common element of human behaviour. Because this effect does not fit with Asch’s Gestalt-view on impression formation and does not readily follow from the data presented in his original paper, the goal of the present study was to critically examine and replicate the studies of Asch’s paper that are most relevant to the primacy-of-warmth effect. Asch was curious how much, if at all, changing one word of the description would change the overall impression of the hypothetical person. This ever-changing, context-dependent nature of centrality that is a key element of Gestalt-models seems to be at least somewhat at odds with the much more simple and parsimonious view that is portrayed by dimensional models, in which warmth is usually seen as central (and as primary over competence). After providing informed consent, participants were instructed that they would see several traits on a computer screen, all of which belonged to the same person. To determine which words in participants’ descriptions were traits, we used Anderson’s list of personality traits (Anderson, 1968); only words included in this list were considered in the present analysis.6 We generated a warmth index for 188 traits in this way: First, we calculated scores for warmth- and competence-relatedness by reverting the ratings to absolute values of the scores centered around the midpoint of the scale (e.g., the ratings one and seven would both be reverted to three, as both scores have a distance of three points to the midpoint of the scale). In line with Asch’s theorizing, changing warm to cold had a more pronounced influence on perceiver’s impressions than changing polite to blunt. Andrea E. Abele, Bogdan Wojciszke, in Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 2014. Still, the basic methodology underlying present-day person perception research is strongly grounded in Asch’s paradigm-shifting paper, in which impression formation was studied in a controlled laboratory setting, yielding high internal validity and experimental precision (Fiske, Cuddy, & Glick, 2007; Gilbert, 1998). Because replications of Asch’s research did not include systematic analysis of open-ended responses either (e.g., Mensh & Wishner, 1947; Semin, 1989; Veness & Brierley, 1963), as yet it is unclear to what extent they provide evidence for primacy-of-warmth (or for effects that were the actual focus of Asch’s paper; more information on those effects is available in our Additional Findings). 153-163. https://doi.org/10.1027/1864-9335/a000179. Contrary to primacy-of-warmth, participants mentioned intelligence in their descriptions of the target person as much as coldness. Reading his 1946 paper for the first time, I could not help but wonder whether Asch’s conclusions about personality inference would hold under modern statistical tests. Impression formation is defined as a procedure whereby specific pieces of information about someone else are combined to… We further investigated the evidence for primacy-of-warmth in Conditions 1 and 2 by applying content analysis to the open-ended responses. The authors declare no conflict-of-interest with the content of this article. 1 In the present research, in line with the recommendations by Fiske et al. Another part of impression-formation is primacy-recency, the tendency for first and last impressions to be the strongest. increase statistical power, Positive-negative asymmetry in evaluations: The distinction For the super nerds out there like me, I have included my tables of results below. Finally, to check whether our textual analysis may have missed subtle references to warmth, we asked an independent coder to rate for 350 (out of 1,023) randomly selected descriptions to what extent warmth or coldness was conveyed (more information is available in the Additional Findings). Both measures suggest that warmth is not the primary determinant of perceivers’ impressions, and that intelligence (a competence-related trait) seems at least equally important. Linguistics, Reanalysis of “impressions of Thus, no trait is central by design, and even traits of special importance (such as warm and cold) may become peripheral in some contexts, as the meaning and weight of any trait is context-dependent. Generally primary over competence in forming impressions, or is this effect limited to very specific circumstances methodology his! Intelligence in their descriptions of the Center for Open Science primary in shaping as... 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