• Home
  • CLT seminar: Christine Howes – The social and emotional impact of intrusive noise

CLT seminar: Christine Howes – The social and emotional impact of intrusive noise


Using an ostensible taste testing experiment, we investigated the effects of intrusive noises on people interacting in a kitchen setting. During the tastings, for half of the pairs, the experimenter started several noise making appliances (a kettle, a hairdryer, a hoover, a juicer, a strimmer and a reversing alarm) at random times – either predictably (i.e. making it obvious, by walking up to the appliances and pressing the on switch), or unpredictably – by remote control. To analyse the effects this intervention had on the interaction we analysed people’s facial expressions for how surprised they looked and how happy they looked when they heard the sounds, using automatic facial recognition software (SHORE). The results show three different effects of context on their responses. First, congruent noise sources i.e. those which are expected in context (e.g. a kettle) cause less disruption than incongruent noise sources (e.g. a strimmer). Second, noises that can be attributed a clear apparent cause are less disruptive than those that are apparently random. Third, there is an effect of social context in that if the cause of the noise is a person, the form of people’s responses depends strongly on the way in which the disruptive noise is introduced by that person.

Dr Christine Howes
Postdoctoral Researcher

Date: 2015-03-12 10:30 - 12:00

Location: L308, Lennart Torstenssonsgatan 8


add to Outlook/iCal

To the top

Page updated: 2015-03-09 00:46

Send as email
Print page
Show as pdf