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Strangers in a Strange LabHow Personality Shapes Our Initial Encounters with Others$
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William Ickes

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195372953

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195372953.001.0001

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Strangers in a Strange Lab

Strangers in a Strange Lab

Chapter:
(p.16) 2 Strangers in a Strange Lab
Source:
Strangers in a Strange Lab
Author(s):

William Ickes

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195372953.003.0002

This chapter describes the method that the author and his colleagues developed to study the influence of personality characteristics on people's naturally occurring social interactions. This method, the unstructured dyadic interaction paradigm, has been used in psychological research for more than three decades. The dyad members' personal traits and characteristics are typically assessed by means of a research survey that takes place before they are scheduled to participate in a laboratory session. During the laboratory session, the dyad members' initial interaction in a “waiting room” is videotaped unobtrusively, without their knowledge. The resulting tapes are then coded for the frequency and duration of interaction behaviors such as interpersonal distance, body orientation, initiating conversation, talking, asking questions, acknowledging, gazing, mutual gazing, and smiling/laughing.

Keywords:   dyadic interaction paradigm, personality assessment, interpersonal distance, body orientation, initiating conversation, talking, asking questions, acknowledging, gazing, smiling

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