Here is an excellent science project that has unlimited potential, and can be a real winner in a science fair. Let your creativity run with this one! All you need is a computer with software that can work with image files (e.g., photoshop) and a digital camera. You can also do this project using a film camera and have access to a darkroom.
About Asymmetric Facial Expressions:
You may not notice it at first, but people have asymmetric facial expressions. That means their expressions on the left and right side of the face are not the same. At peak facial expression, the face is often asymmetric, and the left side of the face in particular seems to be most expressive. The effect appears even more pronounced in young and adolescent adult.
Take a look at the three images below. Only the top is an actual photo! The other two were generated using data from the first image, to create an image of two-right faces, and two left faces.
The left side image clearly shows a sign of grief that is not shown in the image that contains two right faces.
Where can you go from here?
If you have a digital camera ask your friends to pose using different expressions. Make sure you catch your subject straight on for best results.
Questions to consider:
Is there a difference in asymmetry between the sexes?
Is there an age dependent factor?
Are there any cultural differences?
Are the effects the same for a real smile as opposed to someone who is asked to smile? See if you can catch real expressions, perhaps taking your pictures while your subject is watching television or involved in a social situation.
Does the effect go past humans? Do dogs or cats demonstrate asymmetric facial expression?
Is there a left -right handed effect? Or, does the left side always show a more pronounced effect.
Find out what the reason is behind the effect!
There is a wealth of scientific literature about asymmetry in facial expressions but you will probably have to ask your teacher to explain some of the more difficult concepts.