• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Describe and Evaluate two theories of the formation of romantic relationships

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

´╗┐Describe and Evaluate two theories of the formation of romantic relationships In 1970 Byrne and Clore came up with the idea of the reward/need satisfaction theory for the formation of romantic relationships. The believed that the formation of relationships was linked with the idea of classical and operant conditioning, with operant conditioning we are likely to repeat behaviours that leads to a desirable outcome and avoid behaviours that lead to undesirables ones, so we enter relationships because the presence of some individuals is directly associated with reinforcement, they make positive feelings in us, which makes them more attractive to us. For classical conditioning, we tend to prefer people who we associate with pleasant events, so for example if we meet someone somewhere where we are having a good time, then we will associate this person with this good time and find them more attractive in the long run. ...read more.

Middle

This study provides support for both reinforcement ideas and association ideas. Although lab experiments do not necessarily show that the principles of reward/need theory simply apply to real life, the studies lack mundane realism. However some studies have been conducted on real life couples and have tended to support these claims (Caspi & Herbener 1990) Another basic problem with the reward/need satisfaction theory is that it only explores receiving rewards, whereas Hays (1985) found that we also gain satisfaction from giving as well as receiving. Furthermore, reward/need satisfaction theory does not account for cultural and gender differences in the formation of relationships. Lott (1994) suggests that in many cultures women are more focused on the needs of other rather than rewarding reinforcement. ...read more.

Conclusion

They completed several questionnaires over 7 months which reported on attitude similarity and personality traits with their partner. They found that attitude similarity was the most important factor up to about 18 months into a relationship, after this time psychological compatibility and the ability to meet each other?s needs became important, supporting the idea of the filter model. The filter model is a useful way to think about factors that are influential in relationship development and when they might come into play. It also emphasises the importance of demographic factors and similarity of attitudes and values as filters in development of relationships, evidence shows this continues in relationship survival. However the division of relationships into stages fails to capture their fluid and dynamic nature. Real life relationships flow seamlessly. Some may develop faster and others slower than the filter model suggests. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Social Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Social Psychology essays

  1. Outline and Evaluate two or more theories of the formation of relationships

    A second model could be the social exchange theory. It suggests relations are developed on the basis of subjective cost - benefit analysis. People exchange resources with the expectation that the 'reward' will excel over the cost.

  2. Relationship formation

    Also doesn't take into account gender differences as the type of music played may not affect males on their scoring. Overall, the reward/need satisfaction model doesn't take into account that giving may provide people with pleasure rather than just receiving.

  1. The formation of relationships.

    Byrne based the law of attraction on studies called the 'bogus stranger' studies. He assessed attitude questionnaires completed by participants, then gave them bogus questionnaires, which he said had been completed by others, and asked them how much they thought they might like the others if they were to meet them in real life.

  2. Deindividuation theories.

    When an individual goes into a group, the salience of the identity changes. It goes from the personal to the relevant social identity. Being anonymous can either push further towards this social identity or push away depending on the social context in which its occurs.

  1. Evaluate Theories of the Formation of Romantic Relationships

    Therefore, the social demographic filter may be less important today. Nevertheless, Kerchoff and Davis completed further research to support their filter model. They found that student couples who shared similar attitudes were likely to stay together for up to 18 months but after 18 months similarity became less important and complementary needs became more important.

  2. Describe and evaluate two or more theories of the formation of romantic relationships

    So, one cannot generalise the results of this study to the rest of the human population. Another strength of this model is the fact that it provides an explanation of how relationships are formed, so this model could potentially help those people who have troubles starting a relationships.

  1. Outline and evaluate one theory of the formation of romantic relationships. (4+8 marks)

    There are some issues with the methodology used when testing the FM. Firstly it was a longitudinal study so it could be subject to attrition. As participants had the right to withdraw, then those who felt they were inadequate in the study would have dropped out, leaving those who are

  2. Describe and evaluate two or more theories of the formation of romantic relationships. (24 ...

    This supports the theory because it says that some factors are important at different times. At the beginning of the relationship communication is the key. So stage 2 filters out those who are very different to us so we are left with people that share our values, ideas and beliefs.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work