Visual search for schematic emotional faces: angry faces are more than crosses

Dickins, Daina S. E. and Lipp, Ottmar V. (2014) Visual search for schematic emotional faces: angry faces are more than crosses. Cognition and Emotion, 28 1: 98-114. doi:10.1080/02699931.2013.809331

Author Dickins, Daina S. E.
Lipp, Ottmar V.
Title Visual search for schematic emotional faces: angry faces are more than crosses
Journal name Cognition and Emotion   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0269-9931
Publication date 2014-01-01
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/02699931.2013.809331
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 28
Issue 1
Start page 98
End page 114
Total pages 17
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Subject 3205 Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
1201 Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
3204 Developmental and Educational Psychology
Abstract Recent studies of the face in the crowd effect, the faster detection of angry than of happy faces in visual search, suggest that for schematic faces it reflects on perceptual features like inward pointing lines rather than on emotional expressions. Removing a potential confound, Experiments 1-2 replicate the preferential detection of stimuli with inward pointing lines, but Experiment 2a indicates that a surrounding circle is required for the effect to emerge. Experiments 3-7 failed to find evidence for faster detection of schematic faces comprising only the elements critical for the faster detection of angry faces according to a low level visual feature account, inward tilted brows and upturned mouth. Faster detection of anger was evident if eyes or eyes and noses were added, but only if their placement was consistent with the first order relations among these elements in a human face. Drawing the critical elements in thicker, higher contrast lines also led to an anger advantage, but this was smaller than that seen for the complete faces. The present results suggest that, while able to support faster target detection, a prevalence of inward pointing lines is not sufficient to explain the detection advantage of angry schematic faces.
Keyword Anger superiority effect
Face in the crowd effect
Schematic faces
Visual search
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Grant ID DP110100460
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Published online 8 July 2013

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
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