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By C. Spielberge

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Sample text

THE STATE-TRAIT ANXIETY INVENTORY The State-Trait Anxiety Inventory ( S T A I ) was developed to provide reliable, relatively brief self-report measures of both state (Α-State) and trait (A-Trait) anxiety. Item selection and validation procedures for the STAI are described in detail by Spielberger and Gorsuch (1966) and by Spielberger et al (1970). In developing the STAI, it was assumed that items with a demonstrated relationship to other measures of anxiety would be most useful in an inventory designed to measure both Α-State and Α-Trait.

Examples of external stressors that are likely to evoke anxiety reactions are the imminent danger of injury or death that is faced by a soldier in combat, or the threat to self-esteem that is encountered when a student is called upon to recite in class. Any internal stimulus which causes an individual to think about or anticipate a dangerous or frightening situation may also evoke high levels of A-State. For example, a student who suddenly remembers that he has failed to prepare for an examination that is scheduled for the next class period would probably experience a sudden increase in A-State.

Level of Α-Trait would not necessarily be expected to influence the intensity of A-State responses to all stressors, but only to those that persons with high Α-Trait perceive as more threatening. Since high Α-Trait individuals have been described as more self-deprecatory, and as persons who fear failure, it might be expected that they will manifest higher levels of A-State in situations that involve psychological threats to self esteem rather than physical danger. There is some evidence that persons with high Α-Trait do not perceive physical dangers as any more threatening than low Α-Trait individuals.

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