Research success for Hartpury Animal dream team

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A Hartpury graduate and lecturer have teamed up to produce an important study about human relationships and mating behaviour.

Carrie Haslam, who graduated with a BSc (Hons) Bioveterinary Science degree from Hartpury, and Dr Tamara Montrose, a Higher Education Animal Behaviour and Welfare lecturer at the college (pictured), recently had research they produced together published in a top research journal.

Entitled ‘Should have known better: The impact of mating experience and the desire for marriage upon attraction to the narcissistic personality’, the study has been published in the 'Personality and Individual Differences' journal.

It is based on work that Carrie did for her dissertation project at Hartpury. It focuses on the link between women with greater mating experience and those seeking marriage being more attracted to narcissistic men.

Hartpury lecturer, Tamara, said: "I have a strong interest in human behavioural ecology and Carrie is hoping to pursue a career in psychology, so this study was a perfect opportunity to link up and share our expertise and explore our interests.

“There were some surprising findings too. Despite narcissistic males not making good romantic partners, we found that females with greater mating experience and those desiring marriage were more attracted to this personality construct.

“In the study, we suggest that these findings may be due to the fact that while the narcissistic personality has many negative qualities, it also has qualities that are associated with gaining a superior status in life and being able to provide for a partner and family. These traits are obviously desirable in both short and long-term mating contexts.”

The study will also be presented at the European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association 2015 conference in Helsinki. You can read the full study at http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S019188691500210X

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