Published Online: 30 JAN 2010
Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.
Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology
How to Cite
Menzel, A. J. and Maner, J. K. 2010. Interpersonal Perception. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–3.
- Published Online: 30 JAN 2010
In order to function in society, it is crucial that people be able accurately to notice, classify, and predict the behavior of other individuals. This process of perceiving other people and making inferences about what they are like and how they will behave is known as interpersonal perception. Sometimes, perceiving the attributes of others is easy—for example, knowing whether a person is a man or a woman, or knowing the general age of a person. Many of the inferences we form about other people, however, involve difficult-to-see attributes, such as personality traits, as well as other more transitory states such as emotions, goals, and intentions. The process of perceiving these types of attributes in other people can be quite complex. Indeed, perceptions of other people can be influenced by a wide range of factors within both the perceivers and the person being perceived, as well as factors within the immediate social situation.