Anxiety and memory: A recall bias for threatening words in high anxiety

REIDY, John and RICHARDS, Anne (1997). Anxiety and memory: A recall bias for threatening words in high anxiety. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 35 (6), 531-542.

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Few studies have directly examined the relationship between trait anxiety and explicit memory for emotionally congruent material. Evidence from clinically anxious subjects, however, suggests a recall bias favouring non-threatening words as opposed to threatening words. Two experiments are reported which examined the recall performance of high- and low-trait anxious subjects. Contrary to the clinical anxiety findings, there was evidence of a recall bias for threatening rather than non-threatening words in the high-trait anxious group. Further analysis, however, revealed that the recall bias was associated with state anxiety and depression levels rather than trait anxiety. The two experiments also showed that recall was greater for words appearing at the end of the list as opposed to words presented elsewhere in the list. The theoretical and methodological implications of these findings are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Psychology Research Group
Departments: Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities > Psychology, Sociology and Politics
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Depositing User: John Reidy
Date Deposited: 18 Nov 2016 14:54
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2017 13:54

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