1986 Volume 26 Issue 1 Pages 67-76
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of the listener's social reinforcement such as chiming in and nodding given to the speaker on interpersonal attraction in the dyadic conversation. Fourty undergraduates served as subjects who role played either speakers of their own stories or listeners to them. To contrast the differences of interpersonal perception, each subject role played either speaker or listener all the time. The speaker told the same story to the two listeners. One listener listened to the speaker with social approval such as verbal reinforcement and nonverbal reinforcement of nodding. The other listener listened to the speaker without social reinforcement. The same listener listened to one speaker with social reinfofcement and then listened to the other speaker without social reinforcement. The following four findings were revealed. (1) The speaker rated much more favorably the listener with social reinforcement than the listener without social reinforcement. (2) The listener rated more favorably the speaker whom one gave social reinforcement than the speaker whom one did not give social reinforcement. (3) The traits of interpersonal attraction that was influenced by the presence or absence of social reinforcement were found to be the traits of affective likeability and sociability and not the traits of intelligence and morality. (4) The speaker was found to be more sensitive than the listener in the conversational situation. Also, the use of Multidimensional unfolding was tested for the visual representation of multivariate dependent variables as a whole.