What Are the Social Factors That Influence Interpersonal Attraction? Discuss in Relation to Relevant Psychological Theories and Studies

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What are the social factors that influence interpersonal attraction? Discuss in relation to relevant psychological theories and studies Interpersonal relationships are the close relationships we form with others around us. They range from close romantic relationships up to more casual relationships such as acquaintances or university peers. There are numerous numbers of social factors that may lead to interpersonal attraction such as proximity, physical attractiveness, similarity and reciprocity. There are also numerous theories into attraction and how humans form interpersonal relationships. Proximity or being close to a person has a big influence on our choice of friends or romantic partners, previous research suggests that the…show more content…
In a study carried out by Byrne (1971) found that strangers with similar attitudes to participants were rated as being more physically attractive in comparison to participants which had dissimilar attitudes. Another factor in interpersonal attraction is Reciprocity, this is the tendency to be attracted to people who like us and tend to be less attracted to those individuals that dislike us. In a study carried out by Dittes & Kelley (1956) the findings show that participants conformed more when told ‘other group members like you’ in comparison when told ‘other group members dislike you’. People who have the tendency to have low self-esteem or are highly insecure concerning interpersonal relationships have a greater need for positive feedback from others around them, in order to form close interpersonal relationships. As well as the social factors that lead to interpersonal relationships there are a number of different theories that also account for the formation of interpersonal relationships. The matching hypothesis by Walster et al (1966) is such a theory. In the study a computer dance was organised in which the participants were randomly allocated to partners. Midway during the dance the participants were asked to fill out a questionnaire regarding the view of their partners. The views were recorded and compared to judges views of the physical attractiveness of the
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