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      East Asian Young and Older Adult Perceptions of Emotional Faces From an Age- and Sex-Fair East Asian Facial Expression Database

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          There is increasing interest in clarifying how different face emotion expressions are perceived by people from different cultures, of different ages and sex. However, scant availability of well-controlled emotional face stimuli from non-Western populations limit the evaluation of cultural differences in face emotion perception and how this might be modulated by age and sex differences. We present a database of East Asian face expression stimuli, enacted by young and older, male and female, Taiwanese using the Facial Action Coding System (FACS). Combined with a prior database, this present database consists of 90 identities with happy, sad, angry, fearful, disgusted, surprised and neutral expressions amounting to 628 photographs. Twenty young and 24 older East Asian raters scored the photographs for intensities of multiple-dimensions of emotions and induced affect. Multivariate analyses characterized the dimensionality of perceived emotions and quantified effects of age and sex. We also applied commercial software to extract computer-based metrics of emotions in photographs. Taiwanese raters perceived happy faces as one category, sad, angry, and disgusted expressions as one category, and fearful and surprised expressions as one category. Younger females were more sensitive to face emotions than younger males. Whereas, older males showed reduced face emotion sensitivity, older female sensitivity was similar or accentuated relative to young females. Commercial software dissociated six emotions according to the FACS demonstrating that defining visual features were present. Our findings show that East Asians perceive a different dimensionality of emotions than Western-based definitions in face recognition software, regardless of age and sex. Critically, stimuli with detailed cultural norms are indispensable in interpreting neural and behavioral responses involving human facial expression processing. To this end, we add to the tools, which are available upon request, for conducting such research.

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          Most cited references 62

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          Aging and motivated cognition: the positivity effect in attention and memory.

          As people get older, they experience fewer negative emotions. Strategic processes in older adults' emotional attention and memory might play a role in this variation with age. Older adults show more emotionally gratifying memory distortion for past choices and autobiographical information than younger adults do. In addition, when shown stimuli that vary in affective valence, positive items account for a larger proportion of older adults' subsequent memories than those of younger adults. This positivity effect in older adults' memories seems to be due to their greater focus on emotion regulation and to be implemented by cognitive control mechanisms that enhance positive and diminish negative information. These findings suggest that both cognitive abilities and motivation contribute to older adults' improved emotion regulation.
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            Taking time seriously. A theory of socioemotional selectivity.

            Socioemotional selectivity theory claims that the perception of time plays a fundamental role in the selection and pursuit of social goals. According to the theory, social motives fall into 1 of 2 general categories--those related to the acquisition of knowledge and those related to the regulation of emotion. When time is perceived as open-ended, knowledge-related goals are prioritized. In contrast, when time is perceived as limited, emotional goals assume primacy. The inextricable association between time left in life and chronological age ensures age-related differences in social goals. Nonetheless, the authors show that the perception of time is malleable, and social goals change in both younger and older people when time constraints are imposed. The authors argue that time perception is integral to human motivation and suggest potential implications for multiple subdisciplines and research interests in social, developmental, cultural, cognitive, and clinical psychology.
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              A meta-analytic review of emotion recognition and aging: implications for neuropsychological models of aging.

              This meta-analysis of 28 data sets (N=705 older adults, N=962 younger adults) examined age differences in emotion recognition across four modalities: faces, voices, bodies/contexts, and matching of faces to voices. The results indicate that older adults have increased difficulty recognising at least some of the basic emotions (anger, sadness, fear, disgust, surprise, happiness) in each modality, with some emotions (anger and sadness) and some modalities (face-voice matching) creating particular difficulties. The predominant pattern across all emotions and modalities was of age-related decline with the exception that there was a trend for older adults to be better than young adults at recognising disgusted facial expressions. These age-related changes are examined in the context of three theoretical perspectives-positivity effects, general cognitive decline, and more specific neuropsychological change in the social brain. We argue that the pattern of age-related change observed is most consistent with a neuropsychological model of adult aging stemming from changes in frontal and temporal volume, and/or changes in neurotransmitters.

                Author and article information

                Front Psychol
                Front Psychol
                Front. Psychol.
                Frontiers in Psychology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                29 November 2018
                : 9
                1Graduate Institute of Brain and Mind Sciences, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University , Taipei, Taiwan
                2Department of Psychology, Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology, The University of Tokyo , Tokyo, Japan
                3Department of Psychology, College of Science, National Taiwan University , Taipei, Taiwan
                4Neurobiological and Cognitive Science Center, National Taiwan University , Taipei, Taiwan
                5Center for Artificial Intelligence and Advanced Robotics, National Taiwan University , Taipei, Taiwan
                Author notes

                Edited by: George Christopoulos, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

                Reviewed by: Fang Fang Chen, University of Delaware, United States; Matthias S. Gobel, University College London, United Kingdom

                *Correspondence: Joshua Oon Soo Goh joshuagoh@

                This article was submitted to Cultural Psychology, a section of the journal Frontiers in Psychology

                Copyright © 2018 Tu, Lin, Suzuki and Goh.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 8, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 89, Pages: 18, Words: 11882
                Funded by: Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan 10.13039/501100004663
                Award ID: 105-2420-H-002-002-MY2
                Funded by: National Science Council 10.13039/501100001868
                Award ID: 102-2410-H-002-004-MY3
                Original Research


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