Psychology Night Research Posters and Presentations

Faculty Sponsor, if applicable

Kimberly Quinn

Project Abstract

Humanized devices are becoming more common in every aspect of life. The current work examines whether people prefer engaging with a fellow human, an anthropomorphic device (i.e., Amazon's Alexa), or a non-anthropomorphic device (i.e., a computer) following an experience of social exclusion. More specifically, we wanted to see if any particular source was better at fulfilling social needs and whether individuals preferred to engage with any particular device in certain situations (e.g., for objective v. subjective information). Preliminary results show that participants do prefer asking subjective (v. objective) questions to the human over Alexa. Furthermore, there is directional support that participants in the inclusion condition have a lower need for social assurance, as expected. A regression analysis (N=55) also shows that one’s preference to engage with Amazon Alexa versus a human or a computer does not differentially affect their social belonging restoration; each source is just as effective as the others.

Type of Research

Doctoral-Undergraduate Opportunity for Scholarship (DUOS)


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Presentation Year

May 2019