Forming Impressions of People

Part of the Practical Social Work book series


This chapter is concerned with the way people form impressions of other people and make judgements of them, and in particular how such judgements might become more accurate. This is important for social workers and other professionals, but also for people generally, for example in choosing who to work and live with! We discuss the selective and creative nature of perception; accuracy in judging emotion and personality; nonverbal communication and how best to interpret it; and some of the influences on our liking some people more than others.


Social Worker Apply Psychology Nonverbal Communication Form Impression Personality Theory 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Further Reading

  1. The active nature of perception, and other sources of error in our judgements of others are discussed by Argyle (1978), Vernon (1964), Cook (1982). A readable and sophisticated discussion of non-verbal communication can be found in Schneider et al. (1979). On accurate judges see Cook (1979), Schneider et al. (1979). H. C. Smith (1973) provides a radically different perspective. Interpersonal attraction is more a standard textbook topic, e.g. Hilgard et al. (1979). On love, the best book so far is Walster and Walster (1978) though I would have liked them to use Lee’s work (e.g. 1978) to organise their book, rather than as just one approach.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© British Association of Social Workers 1984

Authors and Affiliations

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations