ABSTRACT Repression and sensitization as situational modes of coping with anxiety were examined as predictors of trait measures of cognitive avoidance and vigilance. In this study, 303 undergraduates saw a violent film clip to elicit anxiety. Increases in skin conductance level (SCL) and state anxiety (STA) from baseline were measured to identify repressors (high SCL, low STA) and contrast them with sensitizers (low SCL, high STA) and genuinely low anxious individuals (low SCL, low STA). State anger was also recorded. Trait measures of vigilance and cognitive avoidance were collected 2 weeks earlier. Significant SCL × STA interactions indicated that repressors scored higher on cognitive avoidance and lower on vigilance compared to sensitizers and low anxious participants. Repressors were less likely than sensitizers to report gaze avoidance during the clip. The anger by SCL interaction was nonsignificant, suggesting that repressors and sensitizers differ specifically in the processing of anxiety rather than negative affect in general.