ERIC Number: ED237819
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Reactions to Approach-Distance in Overweight and Normal Weight College Females.
Rogers, Ruth Ann; Thomas, Georgelle
Research has found that the need for personal space is greater for normal persons who are interacting with stigmatized persons, such as overweight people, and that one who is identified as deviant may be more sensitive to environmental cues and react more strongly to affective stimuli. To investigate the reactions to approach/distance among overweight and normal weight college females, 53 white women between the ages of 19 and 23 (28 overweight; 25 normal weight) were approached and given a monologue at a distance of 12, 24, or 39 inches, by a normal weight female confederate. Heart rates were measured during a 10 second baseline interval and for six 10 second intervals of the approach/distance manipulation. After the interaction, all subjects completed the Comfortable Interpersonal Distance Scale (CID) and weight and height data were collected. An analysis of the results showed that overweight females significantly underestimated their actual weights. Analyses of heart rate during the confederate's presence showed that overweight persons' heart rates were greater than normal persons' during intervals 3, 4, and 6. There was no significant difference between the two groups in personal distance needs as measured by the CID, indicating that although overweight females are generally maintained at greater distance than normals, it is because normals need to maintain the greater distance from overweight people, rather than vice-versa. (BL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Comfortable Interpersonal Distance Scale
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Southeastern Psychological Association (29th, Atlanta, GA, March 23-26, 1983).