Mate Selection Strategies: Factors Influencing Mate Choices Research Paper

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Future research should be directed towards giving further insight into the tripartite mechanism presented herein, with specific focus on the concepts of preference asymmetry and integrated effects, and elements of diversity.


3.1 Research Method

The descriptive research method was employed so as to effectively look into the study objectives as well as test the hypotheses. Essentially, the questionnaire survey technique was used for data collection. The questions were self-structured, and touched on background (personal); age -- the minimum age was 18, the highest 37; gender -- male/female; ideal education level for self (H.S. diploma, Bachelor's degree, Master's degree, PHD degree and Not applicable); preferable gender for mate (male/female), preferable age range for mate (17 or younger, 18-21, 22-25, 26-29 and 30+); and ideal age for mate (older than respondent, younger than respondent, same as respondent and no preference).

The rest of the questions touched on the variables used to assess the importance of financial stability and physical appearance on mate selection strategies; preferable body type, importance of partner's job title, importance of partner's financial standing, importance of mate's physical attractiveness and ability to maintain attractiveness. The full survey sheet details can be accessed in appendix 1.

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Administration of the survey sheets took place 'on the streets'. The study area called for a high-priority method of data collection; with the high mobility of university students, sheet-collection would have proven a challenge had the take-home method been employed (Iorio, 2009). Street interviews, moreover, were less costly, allowed for more rapid data collection and presented better chances of achieving sampling balance (Iorio, 2009).

3.2 Research Framework

Research Paper on Mate Selection Strategies: Factors Influencing Mate Choices Assignment

This study seeks to determine the factors that influence mate selection strategies, and in so doing, explore how demographic variables such as age influence mate choices. Previous studies on mate selection have suggested that financial stability and physical attractiveness are important constructs of mate selection strategies. Hence, this study employs the aforementioned variables in its investigation. The study's conceptual structure is as represented in figure 1.

Financial stability

Physical attractiveness


Mate choices

Figure 1: The study's conceptual framework (research framework)

3.3 Research Design

The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) will be utilized for the analysis of collected data. Frequency statistics will be used to measure/assess the extent to which financial stability and physical attractiveness influence mate selection decisions.

Linear regression comes in handy in the modeling of dependent variable's value on the basis of how the variable relates to the predictors. It is important to note, on this front, that the summary table (model) will report on how strong the dependent-independent variables relationship is. R is the indicator of relationship strength, such that the higher the value, the stronger the variable relationship, and vice versa. R2 measures the variation in the dependent variable, and both R. And R2 range between 0 and 1.

Iorio (2009) expresses that independent variables can be categorized as either nominal or ordinal. Ordinal variables are those such as age that allow for distinctions which can quantify variable differences (Iorio, 2009). Nominal variables, on the other hand, allow for distinctions that cannot quantify variable differences (Iorio, 2009). Gender is an example of a nominal variable. The analysis of nominal variables involves the use of dummy variables, which are variables standing in for numerically-encoded nominal data. The gender variable, in this undertaking, will assume two variables (dummy); 1 for male, 2 for female.


4.1 Frequency Statistics

Ten survey sheets were distributed in different locations within DePaul University. The data collected was analyzed using SPSS and the summary output sheets attached as appendices in this text. This study main goal was to establish the degrees to which financial stability and physical attractiveness influence gender-based mate selection decisions. Gender, therefore, was the core independent variable for this study. Having used a gender-balanced sample, the frequency statistics, as shown in table 1, give a frequency percentage of 50 apiece.

Table 1: Frequency Statistics




Cumulative Percentage









4.2 Overall Analysis of the Effect of Preferences on Mate Choices

Analyses revealed that mate preferences influence, to a significantly large extent, the mate choices that human beings make. The analysis of variance (ANOVA) showed that although women place more emphasis on mate preferences than men do, preferences, generally, have a significant effect on the choices of both sexes. This finding follows a similar pattern with past studies, which have, in the past held that mate choices are influenced, significantly, by partner preferences (Buss & Barnes, 1986; Geary, Vigil & Byrd-Craven, 2013; Kille, Forest and Wood, 2013; Yilmaz, Gungor and Celik, 2013; Hancock, 2002). See appendix 2 for full ANOVA details.

All the factors analyzed in appendix 2 have been summed up into; financial capability and physical attractiveness. These two factors have then been analyzed on a per-gender basis, using frequency statistics to determine their effect on human mate choices.

4.3 Factors Influencing Human Mate Choices

The linear regression model was used to explore the extent to which the expectation of financial capability and physical attractiveness influence, by gender, human mate choices. The subsequent subsections present the results. The R. And R2 values run between 0 and 1. Higher values are indicative of stronger relationships.

4.3.1 Relationship between Mate's Financial Capability and Human Choices

Tables 2 and 3 show the relationships between financial capability and mate choices.

Table 2; Model Summary: Men




Adjusted R2

Standard error of estimate






Table 3; Model Summary: Women




Adjusted R2

Standard error of estimate






Predictors: (Constant), Gender

The results depict a stronger relationship in the case of men, compared to women, strongly contradict hypothesis H1. The interpretation is that financial capability exerts a considerable degree of influence on both sexes' mate choices, but influences men's mating decisions more than it does women's. This result could probably be due to the fact that more women are pursuing higher education, and taking up the challenging positions of management that were traditionally considered 'masculine'. Owing to this, women have become more self-sufficient and more able meet their financial needs by their own means, and, hence, no longer view men as catapults for achieving financial success (Kille, Forest and Wood, 2013).

A second possibility is that, thanks to the ongoing developments on women-empowerment and self-sufficiency, men are getting more choosy regarding the kind of women they would want as mates, especially because of the long-held belief that learned, self-sufficient, and financially stable women are difficult to 'control' and 'own'. This is quite significant, and is probably the most reasonable explanation for the high degree of importance men have been observed to place on such factors as partner's job title, and educational level, which share significant connection with financial stability, and which were also investigated in this study. See appendix 3 for full statistical results.

The study results support the findings of Kille, Forest and Wood (2013) and Debruines, Jones, Crawford, Welling and Little (2010), which reported that today, women are self-sufficient, and no longer need men as 'financial partners', and contradict the findings of Cowan and Kinder (1985), which suggested the contrary.

4.3.2 Relationship between Physical Attractiveness and Mate Choices

Tables 4 and 5 show the relationships between physical attractiveness and mate choices.

Table 4; Model Summary: Men




Adjusted R2

Standard error of estimate






Table 5; Model Summary: Women




Adjusted R2

Standard error of estimate






Predictors: (Constant), Gender

The results demonstrate that the influence of physical attractiveness is higher in men's mate choices than in women's, and, hence, agree with hypothesis H2. The interpretation of this result is that although men take physical attractiveness into consideration when making mate selection decisions more than women do, the factor's significance is quite minimal. This result could be attributed to the fact that physical attractiveness is more of an element of subjective judgment. People have different tastes and preferences, and what one person considers 'very attractive' may not appeal, even one bit, to another, and as long as this is the case, then there may be no need to consider the factor after all.

Men link the cues of physical attractiveness to youth, and high reproductive capability, which is probably why they attach relatively higher importance to the factor, than women do. Of significance, however, is that the element of physical attractiveness appears to be more significant to the younger generation, than it is to older people. The explanation for this observation could be that younger people are more interested in showing off, than they are in finding and establishing serious relationships, which is often the main goal for older people.

The study results, in this case, support the findings of Buss and Barnes (1986), which reported that men take physical attractiveness into consideration, when making… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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