Toward a comprehensive model of face impressions: What we know, what we do not, and paths forward

Eric Hehman, Ryan M. Stolier, Jonathan Freeman, Jessica K. Flake, Sally Y. Xie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A person's impression of another depends upon three sources of variance. The characteristics of the target, the characteristics of the perceiver, and the interplay between the two. Researchers have dedicated different amounts of study to these three sources of variance, and therefore they differ in how well they are understood. The present work will first review the portions of the face impression process that are understood well, then identify and discuss portions of the process less well understood. We will then question to what extent the current state of knowledge will generalize to novel targets and populations. Finally, we will review several modeling approaches that can accommodate relatively unexamined yet important sources of variance in impression formation, suggesting a clear path forward toward a comprehensive understanding of face impressions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere12431
JournalSocial and Personality Psychology Compass
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2019


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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