Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name


Organizational Unit

College of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences

First Advisor

Kateri McRae, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Daniel McIntosh

Third Advisor

George Potts

Fourth Advisor

Max Weisbuch

Fifth Advisor

Erin Willer


Attention, Attention training, Electromyography, Minimal groups


There is a group effect on matching behavior; ingroups tend to be matched more than outgroups. Differences in attention to ingroup and outgroup members may correspond with group differences in matching. Determining how both attention and matching are influenced by minimal groups can help distinguish between potential mechanisms used to explain group effects in social behavior. Furthermore, it would be beneficial to know if attention biases can be trained to social groups. Study 1 replicated attention training to neutral faces, but study 2 failed to replicate attention training to emotional faces. Study 3 used the same attention training method, but failed to train attention to minimal groups. Study 4 measured attention and mimicry to minimal groups and concluded that they follow the same pattern. Mimicry of ingroup happiness expressions was observed, but incongruent frowning reactions to outgroup happiness expressions were observed. No clear overall attention bias to minimal groups was observed, but individuals with an ingroup attention bias smile to ingroup happy expressions, while individuals with an outgroup attention bias frown to outgroup happy expressions. Future studies should determine if attention might play a causal role in the group effect on mimicry. Future research should also search for other methods of overcoming the potentially deleterious effects of being in the outgroup.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Heidi Blocker


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

102 p.



Included in

Psychology Commons