January 30, 2009

Study: Women harder to read on first date

University of Indiana researchers said a study involving speed dating suggests both sexes have difficulties reading the intentions of women.

Skyler Place, a doctoral student in the university's Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences and lead author of the study, said men and women viewing video clips of speed dating were equally accurate in reading whether men were interested in the women they were speaking to and had equal difficulty reading the women.

The hardest-to-read women were being misperceived at a much higher rate than the hardest-to-read men. Those women were being flirtatious, but it turned out they weren't interested at all, Place said. Nobody could really read what these deceptive females were doing, including other women.

Place said his study, published in the January issue of the journal Psychological Science, involved 28 women and 26 men of college age viewing videos of speed dating sessions in Germany. The participants were asked to determine whether the people in the video were interested in one another by body language, tone of voice, eye contact and other cues.