Person Perception

Bruce D. Bartholow and Cheryl L. Dickter

in The Oxford Handbook of Social Neuroscience

Published in print September 2011 | ISBN: 9780195342161
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

Person Perception

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  • Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Social Psychology



This chapter is concerned with the ways in which the use of various psychophysiological measures, and the theory that underlies their use, has advanced understanding of person perception. A social neuroscience approach can be useful for testing theory and advancing the science of person perception. In particular, event-related brain potentials (ERPs) provide a time-sensitive means of measuring and separating the rapidly unfolding cognitive and affect-related processes theorized in many models of person perception, and functional brain imaging permits a detailed picture of the neural structures that subserve these processes. Neuropsychological studies also offer important insights into the functions of particular regions of the brain that appear crucial for effective person perception. Most importantly, linking these neural indices with important psychological and behavioral outcomes can provide a more comprehensive understanding of person perception than can be gained by any self-report, behavioral, cognitive, neural, or biological approach alone.

Keywords: person perception; cognitive neuroscience; psychophysiological measures; stereotyping; perception of emotion; face perception; impression formation

Article.  10664 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Cognitive Neuroscience ; Social Psychology

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