What the researchers looked for is called, in academic-speak, "matching": the likelihood and factors that lead to any individual partnering up.(They looked only at opposite-sex relationships within the same school.) That's uncommon: Most academic studies on marriage and partner-matching use a technique called "," which looks at pre-existing couples and defines the characteristics they do and do not have in common."That's a thing that girls let slide, because you have to," the student explains.
(Humans tend to partner with mates that look and act like them.In real terms, that means couples with the same socioeconomic, racial, and religious background are common.Though that will undoubtedly come as cold comfort to those legions of lonely 14-year-old boys.Though many high school-era memories are tinted with a rosy glow of nostalgia, the reality is it’s a turbulent time of self-discovery, confusion and learning from mistakes.Relatively little such data exists for teenagers, who mostly work the old-fashioned meet-someone-in-homeroom way.
But in examining the Add Health data, he and his colleagues found one classic economic tenet driving the byzantine high-school dating market: Scarcity determines value.For them, a relationship at some point becomes more important than purity.Because of that phenomenon, in schools with more boys than girls, the girls hold more cards and have less sex.For 30-year-olds, that might mean predicating a relationship on willingness to marry or have kids.For high schoolers, that might mean basing a relationship on, well, the Arcidiacono notes that there's a treasure trove of statistical data on the dating preferences, rather than pairings, of adults, due to dating sites like And who does the high-school dating system disadvantage most, statistically?