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Warm, Competent, or Both? : Trait Perception in Friendship, Acquaintanceship, Siblings, and Romantic Relationship: Explicit, Implicit, and Transgression Studies

Chittham, Phakkanun (2017) Warm, Competent, or Both? : Trait Perception in Friendship, Acquaintanceship, Siblings, and Romantic Relationship: Explicit, Implicit, and Transgression Studies. PhD thesis, University of Essex.

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Abstract

The findings regarding trait preference or what we find desirable in a relationship partner such as a friend, a romantic partner, or a colleague are abundant. However, the evidence from the actual choice paradigm is not as substantial. Thus, the thesis focused on the established relationships by asking participants to report personality of their real partners. The studies included friendship, acquaintanceship, long-term romantic relationship, and sibling relation because these relationships are common. Given the predominance of close friendship, it was used as the comparison point. Closeness was tested if it could differentiate the relationships and influenced trait perception. The findings suggested that romantic partner showed a greater closeness compared to close friend, but the trait perception was similar. Between close friend and sibling, the former was deemed closer. However, no difference in trait perception was found. As predicted, the contrast was clearer when close friend was compared to acquaintance. Close friend was perceived as significantly closer, also more competent and warmer. Personality traits were organized into two groups. The first is warmth or social-oriented qualities such as caring and sociable. The second is competence or task-oriented attributes such as capable and skilled. Hence, the two groups of traits were also compared. In terms of the importance of warmth and competence, the relationship partners were not consistently perceived as higher in warmth than competence. This implied that warmth was not necessarily more important than competence as the previous studies suggested.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: personality traits, warmth, competence, relationship, closeness
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Phakkanun Chittham
Date Deposited: 19 Jul 2017 14:35
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2017 14:35
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/20092

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