Title

Confidence Under Stress: How Self-Efficacy Influences Locus of Control and Anxiety in a Stressful Situation

Presenter Information

William CrabtreeFollow

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

Psychology-Sociology

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Dr. Marie Karlsson, PhD.

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

Past research has shown that having an internalized of locus of control is negatively correlated with an individual’s perceived anxiety (Gallagher, Barlow, & Bentley, 2014). There is also evidence that having an internal locus of control is negatively correlated with stressful life events and situations (Ryan & Gleason, 2013). Newer research suggests that locus of control could be state-dependent, changing with more stressful life events (Nowicki, Ellis, Iles-Caven, Gregory, & Golding, 2018). Higher internal locus of control has been shown to be related to higher levels of self-efficacy (Beheshtifar & Malikeh, 2015). This study builds off of previous research by determining if an induced state of self-efficacy during a stressful situation would internalize locus of control, and therefore lower levels of perceived stress and anxiety. This study contains 2 parts. In part 1, participants are completing online surveys that measure stress, generalized anxiety, locus of control, social anxiety, and self-efficacy. In part 2, participants are randomly assigned to one of three conditions (positive self efficacy, neutral, and negative self-efficacy) to induce a certain state of self efficacy, and then completed the Trier Social Stress Test (Kudielka, Hellhammer, & Kirschbaum, 2007) in a lab setting. Throughout the stress task, participants will be asked to report their levels of stress, anxiety, locus of control, and self-efficacy. Hypothesis 1 is that individuals induced into an increased state of self-efficacy (positive condition) will report higher internal state locus of control and lower levels of anxiety than the other conditions. Hypothesis 2 is that individuals who receive no changes in state self efficacy (neutral condition) will only exhibit increases in anxiety and externalization of locus of control throughout the stress task. Hypothesis 3 is that individuals who are induced into a lower state of self efficacy (negative condition) will see an even more externalized locus of control than the neutral and positive self efficacy stimulus groups, whilst also showing higher levels of anxiety than both other groups. These results could potentially suggest methods of managing anxiety in stressful situations, as well as what could increase anxiety in stressful situations.

Keywords: Stress, Anxiety, Self-Efficacy, Locus of Control, Situation

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Confidence Under Stress: How Self-Efficacy Influences Locus of Control and Anxiety in a Stressful Situation

Past research has shown that having an internalized of locus of control is negatively correlated with an individual’s perceived anxiety (Gallagher, Barlow, & Bentley, 2014). There is also evidence that having an internal locus of control is negatively correlated with stressful life events and situations (Ryan & Gleason, 2013). Newer research suggests that locus of control could be state-dependent, changing with more stressful life events (Nowicki, Ellis, Iles-Caven, Gregory, & Golding, 2018). Higher internal locus of control has been shown to be related to higher levels of self-efficacy (Beheshtifar & Malikeh, 2015). This study builds off of previous research by determining if an induced state of self-efficacy during a stressful situation would internalize locus of control, and therefore lower levels of perceived stress and anxiety. This study contains 2 parts. In part 1, participants are completing online surveys that measure stress, generalized anxiety, locus of control, social anxiety, and self-efficacy. In part 2, participants are randomly assigned to one of three conditions (positive self efficacy, neutral, and negative self-efficacy) to induce a certain state of self efficacy, and then completed the Trier Social Stress Test (Kudielka, Hellhammer, & Kirschbaum, 2007) in a lab setting. Throughout the stress task, participants will be asked to report their levels of stress, anxiety, locus of control, and self-efficacy. Hypothesis 1 is that individuals induced into an increased state of self-efficacy (positive condition) will report higher internal state locus of control and lower levels of anxiety than the other conditions. Hypothesis 2 is that individuals who receive no changes in state self efficacy (neutral condition) will only exhibit increases in anxiety and externalization of locus of control throughout the stress task. Hypothesis 3 is that individuals who are induced into a lower state of self efficacy (negative condition) will see an even more externalized locus of control than the neutral and positive self efficacy stimulus groups, whilst also showing higher levels of anxiety than both other groups. These results could potentially suggest methods of managing anxiety in stressful situations, as well as what could increase anxiety in stressful situations.

Keywords: Stress, Anxiety, Self-Efficacy, Locus of Control, Situation