Cues and Channels in Emotion Recognition
AbstractThis article addresses methodological issues pertinent to judgment studies in nonverbal communication research, in general, and to the perception and attribution of emotions, in particular. We investigated which behavioral cues are used in portraying various emotions and to what extent the channel of presentation and encoding differences between actors affect judgment accuracy. In an encoding study the nonverbal behaviors of 6 different actors (3 male, 3 female) portraying four emotions (joy, sadness, anger, surprise) were analyzed from a videotape. In a decoding study these portrayals were shown using 4 channels of presentation (audio-video, video only, audio only, filtered audio), to groups of naive judges. The results indicate that different nonverbal cues are used to portray the various emotions and that differences between channels and between actors strongly affect decoding accuracy. Specifically, overemphasis of behavioral cues characteristic for certain emotions results in reduced decoding accuracy.