Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Livingston Alexander, Doris Redfield, Harry Robe

Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Master of Arts


The purposes of this study were (a) to determine if relaxation procedures, consisting of meditation and cognitive self-statements, were effective in improving test performance and in reducing test anxiety and (b) to investigate the relationship between test anxiety and test performance. Thirty-six students in an undergraduate psychology class were administered a self-report anxiety inventory, the Test Anxiety Scale-Revised (TASC-R). The students were then matched according to test anxiety level and randomly assigned to an experimental group or a control group. The experimental group received 20 minutes of relaxation treatments immediately prior to the third, fourth, and fifth course content exams. The control group spent an equal amount of time before these three course content exams in unstructured review. Students in both groups were asked to respond to the TASC-R prior to taking the initial relaxation treatment and following the final relaxation treatment.

Analysis of variance procedures were used to assess the effects of the relaxation procedures on anxiety and test performance. The results showed no significant difference between the treatment and control groups on either anxiety or test performance. Thus, no evidence is presented in this study to indicate that relaxation procedures do in fact improve test performance, or reduce test anxiety.

Correlational procedures were used to assess the relationship between test anxiety and test performance. No meaningful significant relationships were demonstrated for either group or both groups combined.


Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences

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Psychology Commons