Greater Need to Belong Predicts a Stronger Preference for Extraverted Faces
Humans have a pervasive need to belong that subsequently elicits responses to facilitate affiliative opportunity, including enhanced perceptual acuity toward affiliative cues. Given past research indicating individuals can accurately detect another's extraversion from facial cues, and that extraversion is associated with sociality and larger social networks, we predicted that higher belongingness needs would be associated with stronger preferences for extraverted targets, based on facial cues. To test this hypothesis, participants viewed face pairs, with one face manipulated to be extraverted and another face introverted, and indicated their preferences; participants also completed the need to belong scale. Higher need to belong was associated with a greater preference for extraverted, relative to introverted, target faces, r(147) = 0.160, p = 0.051, [95% CI: 0.00, 0.31]. Results were not qualified by target or participant sex. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that greater belonging needs lead individuals to prefer others most likely to satisfy that need, specifically, more extraverted social targets.
Personality and Individuality Differences
(2017). Greater Need to Belong Predicts a Stronger Preference for Extraverted Faces. Personality and Individuality Differences, 104, 220-223.
Available at: https://aquila.usm.edu/fac_pubs/15357