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Cognitive biases in social anxiety : an experimental study of the Clark/Wells model Mellings, Tanna Marlane Boucher


This study examined cognitive processing of internal and external sources of information during social interactions. Socially anxious (N=58) and nonanxious (N=58) male and female students participated in a social interaction with a confederate and then completed measures of attentional focus, social judgment, memory for various types of social information, and rumination. Compared to nonanxious participants, socially anxious participants selectively attended to self versus partner information, displayed greater judgmental biases, recalled less partner-related and more self-related information, and displayed greater post-interaction rumination. State anxiety did not significantly affect memory. The results suggested that socially anxious subjects displayed selective attention and encoding rather than selective retrieval of social information.

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