Developmental changes in decoding discrepant and nondiscrepant nonverbal cues

Miron Zuckerman, Peter D. Blanck, Bella M. DePaulo, Robert Rosenthal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Examined developmental changes in responses to consistent and discrepant video and audio nonverbal cues. A videotaped Nonverbal Discrepancy Test was administered to 121 males and 129 females aged 9-15 yrs. The discrepancy test measured (a) decoding accuracy--the extent to which Ss are able to identify affects (positivity and dominance) from visual (facial and body) cues and audio (content-filtered and random-spliced) cues--and (b) video primacy--the extent to which Ss are more influenced by video (face or body) than by audio cues. Results show that older Ss were more accurate at decoding affects than were younger Ss, particularly dominance-submission cues. Video primacy increased with age for facial cues (but not for body cues) and for cues of positivity (but not for cues of dominance). Relative to males, younger females showed more video primacy and older females showed less video primacy, particularly for cues of dominance-submission. Relative to younger Ss, older Ss showed less video primacy in decoding extremely discrepant audio and video cues than in decoding moderately discrepant ones. The development of nonverbal sensitivity to video and audio cues is discussed. (24 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)220-228
Number of pages9
JournalDevelopmental psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1980
Externally publishedYes


  • developmental differences, decoding consistent vs discrepant audio vs video nonverbal affective body &
  • facial cues, 9-15 yr olds
  • sex &

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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