Gender and speech rate in the perception of competence and social attractiveness
The authors' hypotheses were that (a) listeners regard speakers whose global speech rates they judge to be similar to their own as more competent and more socially attractive than speakers whose rates are different from their own and (b) gender influences those perceptions. Participants were 17 male and 28 female listeners; they judged each of 3 male and 3 female speakers in terms of 10 unipolar adjective scales. The authors used 8 of the scales to derive 2 scores describing the extent to which the listener viewed a speaker as competent and socially attractive. The 2 scores were related by trend analyses (a) to the listeners' perceptions of the speakers' speech rates as compared with their own and (b) to comparisons of the actual speech rates of the speakers and listeners. The authors examined trend components of the data by split-plot multiple regression analyses. In general, the results supported both hypotheses. The participants judged speakers with speech rates similar to their own as more competent and socially attractive than speakers with speech rates slower or faster than their own. However, the ratings of competence were significantly influenced by the gender of the listeners, and those of social attractiveness were influenced by the gender of the listeners and the speakers.
Journal of Social Psychology
Feldstein, S.; Dohm, Faith-Anne; and Crown, C., "Gender and speech rate in the perception of competence and social attractiveness" (2001). GSEAP Faculty Publications. 37.
Feldstein, S., Dohm, F. A., & Crown, C. (2001). Gender and speech rate in the perception of competence and social attractiveness. Journal of Social Psychology, 141(6), 785-806.