Why presenting your best side may be all in the mind

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The Independent Online

The way we pose for photographs differs according to whether we want to appear rational and objective or intuitive and sensitive, researchers say. A survey of academics has shown that the pose people adopt reflects the discipline in which they work.

Researchers writing in the journal PLOS One examined the homepage pictures of almost 6,000 academics on university websites and found that scientists tended to present the right side of their face to the camera, stressing their rational, non-emotional thinking. In contrast those involved in the arts presented their left side, displaying their "feeling" and intuitive understanding.

The researchers call for further studies to determine whether "rational" academics who present their right cheek are cited more often by others.