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Open AccessArticle

Face Preference in Infants at Six and Nine Months Old: The Effects of Facial Attractiveness and Observation Experience

1
Faculty of Psychology, Otemon Gakuin University, Osaka 567-8502, Japan
2
Faculty of Child Care and Education, Osaka University of Comprehensive Children Education, Osaka 546-0021, Japan
3
Department of Fundamental Engineering, Utsunomiya University, Tochigi 321-8585, Japan
4
Center for Baby Science, Doshisha University, Kyoto 619-0225, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Symmetry 2020, 12(7), 1082; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym12071082
Received: 24 May 2020 / Revised: 13 June 2020 / Accepted: 24 June 2020 / Published: 1 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Symmetry of Perception and Behaviour)
Attractiveness is perceived based on both facial physical features and prior experience for adults. Infants also prefer attractive or familiar faces, but it is unclear whether facial physical features and prior experience affect their preference. In this study, we investigated whether infants’ preference for faces was shaped by both facial physical features and facial looking experience. This experiment comprised two tasks, observation and preference looking. We manipulated fixation durations in the first task (observation experience) to differ between presented faces and measured the preference for faces in the second task right after the observation task. We conducted two experiments: the same faces in the same positions through both tasks in Experiment 1, and the same faces in different positions in Experiment 2, and analyzed the interaction between observation experience and attractiveness of face images in terms of preference. Observation experience and facial attractiveness only affected preference in Experiment 2: Infants generally looked longer at the flickered position but different face, but looked for the attractive face when the face in the flickered position changed from attractive to unattractive. We suggest that observation experience arouses spatial attention, and that facial attractiveness attracts infants’ attention only when they notice changes of faces. View Full-Text
Keywords: face; infant; preference looking; attractiveness; observation experience face; infant; preference looking; attractiveness; observation experience
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Kuraguchi, K.; Taniguchi, K.; Kanari, K.; Itakura, S. Face Preference in Infants at Six and Nine Months Old: The Effects of Facial Attractiveness and Observation Experience. Symmetry 2020, 12, 1082.

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