Individual differences in perception of similarity of facial images and characteristics of oculomotor activity



The article presents the results of the cross-cultural study with participation of representatives of Russian and Tuva nationalities. Individual differences in subjective evaluation of magnitude of similarity of images forming a transitional series between Mongoloid and Caucasoid faces were revealed. The individual differences occurred mainly in relation to the target pairs in which one or both images were borderline in the transitional series, and which did not consist of images between which there was a large morphing step. These differences were associated with the features of oculomotor activity recorded with the help of an eye tracker during the perception of test images. The most significant differences in the duration and variance of visual fixations were found for two borderline images in the transitional series. Among Tuvan and Russian participants, the greatest individual differences in subjective similarity ratings were found for the same test pairs of facial images. In relation to these test pairs, general, opposite and specific for the Tuva and Russian samples trends were identified regarding indicators of oculomotor activity. The results indicate the constructivist nature of subjective assessment of similarity magnitude, and the connection of this process with characteristics of oculomotor activity.

General Information

Keywords: comparison, subjective evaluation of similarity, individual differences, eye tracker, oculomotor activity

Journal rubric: Face Science

Article type: scientific article


Funding. The study was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, project no. 16-06-01100 “Regularities of formation and transmission of a perceptual image in the process of communication: a cross-cultural aspect.”

For citation: Samoylenko E.S., Basiul I.A. Individual differences in perception of similarity of facial images and characteristics of oculomotor activity. Eksperimental'naâ psihologiâ = Experimental Psychology (Russia), 2019. Vol. 12, no. 3, pp. 73–91. DOI: 10.17759/exppsy.2019120306. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


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Information About the Authors

Elena S. Samoylenko, Doctor of Psychology, Chief Researcher, Laboratory of Cognitive Processes and Mathematical Psychology, Institute of Psychology, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Ivan A. Basiul, Junior Researcher. Laboratory of Cognitive Processes and Mathematical Psychology, Institute of Psychology of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Lecturer of the Department of General Psychology, Moscow Institute of Psychoanalysis, Research laboratory assistant, Institute of Experimental Psychology of MSPPU, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:



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