Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science

Living Edition
| Editors: Todd K. Shackelford, Viviana A. Weekes-Shackelford

Social Categorization by Age of Faces

  • Denise M. Barth
  • Bradley D. Mattan
  • Jasmin CloutierEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-16999-6_2433-1



Chronological age refers to the number of years since birth that an individual has been alive. Age can also be discussed as a category, however, with individuals belonging to a group of people whose chronological age falls within a specified range (i.e., age group). For example, youth as an age group may include anyone with a chronological age between 0 and 30 years old. Ultimately, age groups are social constructs and may vary by culture.

Social categorization refers to the classification of other individuals into particular group memberships based on characteristics deemed meaningful by society. Examples of social categories include age group, sex, and race. Social categorization based on age can lead to stereotypical and evaluative biases. One of the central ways by which we categorize age is through examining the facial characteristics of others.


Social categorization is instrumental to our understanding of others and, accordingly,...

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Denise M. Barth
    • 1
  • Bradley D. Mattan
    • 1
  • Jasmin Cloutier
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.University of ChicagoChicagoUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Carey Fitzgerald
    • 1
  1. 1.University of South Carolina - BeaufortBlufftonUSA