Staring and Perceptions of People with Facial Disfigurement
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Rebecca L. Halioua, Richard S. T. Williams, Nicholas P. Murray, Thomas K. Skalko, Hans G. VogelsongStaring and Perceptions of People with Facial Disfigurement

Injuries involving the face counted for 673 out of 1,130 injuries reported in the U.S. Navy-Marine Corps Combat Trauma Registry from March 1, 2004 to September 30, 2004 (Wade, Dye, Mohrle, & Galarneau, 2007). People with facial disfigurement experience stigmatization due to their difference in appearance (Lawrence, Rosenberg, & Fauerbach, 2007); staring is a common stigmatizing behavior reported by people with differences in physical appearance. The purpose of this study was to determine if there were statistically significant relationships between staring and perceptions of people with facial disfigurement as compared to people without facial disfigurement. A convenience sample of college students (N = 33) was used. Staring was measured by fixation time in seconds with an Applied Sciences Laboratories (ASL, Watham, MA) 6,000 SU eye movement system with Eyehead Integration Software and GazeTracker. Perceptions were measured by the Facial Disfigurement Photograph Scale, a Likert-type scale which measured perceptions of honesty, employability, intelligence, trustworthiness, attractiveness, optimism, effectiveness, popularity, and capability based on a person’s appearance in a photo. Results indicated that people with facial disfigurement (M = 3.2, SD = 1.7) were stared at longer than people without facial disfigurement (M = 2.7, SD = 1.3); t = -2.25, p < .05. The perception of capability of persons with facial disfigurement was the only item significantly related to staring (p < .05).

Author Rebecca L. Halioua, Richard S. T. Williams, Nicholas P. Murray, Thomas K. Skalko, Hans G. Vogelsong
Volume Vol 45, No 4 (2011)
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