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Psychol Sci. 2011 Aug;22(8):984-9. doi: 10.1177/0956797611414725. Epub 2011 Jul 1.

Knowing your own mate value: sex-specific personality effects on the accuracy of expected mate choices.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Mainz 55099, Germany.


Knowing one's mate value (mate-value accuracy) is an important element in reproductive success. We investigated within- and between-sex differences in this ability in a real-life speed-dating event. A total of 190 men and 192 women filled out a personality questionnaire and participated in speed-dating sessions. Immediately after each date, participants recorded who they would choose as mates and who they expected would choose them. In line with evolutionarily informed hypotheses, results indicated that sociosexually unrestricted men and more agreeable women showed greater mate-value accuracy than sociosexually restricted men and less agreeable women, respectively. These results have important implications for understanding mating behavior and perhaps the origin of sex differences in personality.

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