COMMUNICATION FEAR: A CORRELATIONAL STUDY OF TRAIT GENERALITY

Authors

  • JEFFREY M. LOHR,

    1. Jeffrey M. Lohr (Ph.D., University of Hawaii, 1973) is an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701.
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  • RICHARD G. REA,

    1. Richard G. Rea (Ed. D., Auburn University, 1965) is a professor of speech and dramatic art at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701.
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  • BECKY B. PORTER,

    1. Becky B. Porter (M. A., University of Arkansas, 1979) is a Ph.D. candidate in clinical psychology at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701. L.
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  • L. KEVIN HAMBERGER

    1. Kevin Hamberger (M. A., University of Arkansas, 1979) is a Ph.D. candidate in clinical psychology at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701. This study accepted for publication September 11, 1979.
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Abstract

Recent theoretical analyses of communication fear have employed the analogy of state and trait anxiety. Communication apprehension is considered to be representative of general trait anxiety which is a function of disordered personality processes. Public speaking fear represents state anxiety and is a function of normal social evaluation anxiety. Two studies are reported which correlate state-trait measures of anxiety with communication apprehension and public speaking fear. The data support the hypothesis that communication apprehension is associated with trait anxiety but, contrary to the theoretical analysis, public speaking anxiety is associated with both state anxiety and trait anxiety. The results are discussed in terms of the theoretical analysis of communication fear. The implications for future research on assessment and amelioration of communication fear are considered.

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