Interpersonal Sensitivity: Theory and Measurement

By Judith A. Hall; Frank J. Bernieri | Go to book overview

9
The Interpersonal
Perception Task (IPT):
Alternative Approaches to
Problems of Theory and Design
Dane Archer
University of California, Santa Cruz
Mark Costanzo
Claremont McKenna College
Robin Akert
Wellesley College

This chapter describes the theoretical issues and concrete design features that inspired the Interpersonal Perception Task (IPT). The IPT is a broadcast quality videotape that has 30 scenes, and each scene contains a sequence of naturalistic interaction. The IPT scenes reflect the spectrum of simultaneous communication channels found in everyday interaction, and the IPT viewer is presented with naturally co-occurring cues that are verbal, coverbal, and nonverbal.

For each IPT scene there is an interpretive question, and for every question there is an objectively correct answer. The IPT items include a range of qualitatively different interpretive areas. In one IPT scene, a man and a woman interact with two children, and the viewer is asked to infer which of the two children is theirs. In a second IPT scene, a woman tells two different accounts of her childhood, and the viewer is asked to judge which of the two accounts is true. In a third IPT scene, two men discuss a game of basketball they have just played, and the viewer is asked to identify which man won the game. In a fourth IPT

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