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Record identifier : 568874
Personal Name - Primary Intelectual Responsibility : Kassoff, Lara Beth
Title and statement of responsibility : The effects of humor and anxiety on task performance [Thesis]
Publication, Distribution,Etc. : Fairleigh Dickinson University, 2009
Language of the Item : eng
Dissertation of thesis details and type of degree : Ph.D
Body granting the degree : , Fairleigh Dickinson University
Summary or Abstract : Two hundred seven students from undergraduate classes at Fairleigh Dickinson University participated in a study to measure the effects of humor and anxiety on task performance. Participants were randomly assigned to one of four conditions: high anxiety/humor, low anxiety/humor, high anxiety/non-humor, or low anxiety/non-humor. They began the study by completing a simple practice anagrams task, followed by a more challenging anagrams task. To manipulate anxiety levels, the high anxiety condition received a difficult list of anagrams, and was put under time pressure. The low anxiety condition consisted of easy anagrams and did not have time pressure. Students were then asked to complete the state form of State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI; Spielberg et al., 1970) as a manipulation check of anxiety levels. Next, participants assigned to the humor group were asked to look at a series of humorous cartoons. The non-humor group received a similar but non-humorous set of cartoons. Finally, all participants were given four minutes to complete a word search as a final measure of task performance. After completing the word search task, participants were asked follow-up questions regarding feelings about their performance, anxiety levels, and the humor in the study. Results indicated that the humor manipulation was successful, as participants reported that they enjoyed the cartoon humor significantly more and rated the cartoons as significantly funnier than those in the non-humor conditions. Although participants in the high anxiety condition rated their anxiety on a self-report form as higher than those in the low anxiety condition, this difference was not significant. Furthermore, there were no significant effects of humor or anxiety on final task performance. Post-task questionnaire responses indicated that participants in the humor condition felt that the humor had a significantly more positive effect on their performance than those in the non-humor condition. In addition, participants in the high anxiety condition were significantly more satisfied with their performance than those in the low anxiety condition. Finally, those in the low anxiety group reported feeling significantly more stress than those in the high anxiety group. Interpretations of these findings are discussed and implications for clinical psychology are presented..
Topical Name Used as Subject : Educational psychology
: Clinical psychology
Information of biblio record : TL
 
 
 
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