The effects of facilitative and debilitative achievement anxiety on notetaking

Carol Carrier, Verna Higson, Victor Klimoski, Eric Peterson, Carol Carrier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of anxiety on notetaking behaviors during a lecture and on subsequent test performance. Eighty-seven high school juniors and seniors classified as having high facilitative anxiety, high debilitative anxiety, low facilitative anxiety, or low debilitative anxiety according to Alpert and Haber’s (1960) Anxiety Achievement Test were assigned to one of two treatments. In the Anxiety Inducing Treatment, subjects were told that they would be given a difficult test after listening to a lecture, that they should take notes, and that their scores on the test would allow the teacher to see how well they learned new material. In the second treatment, Neutral Instructions, subjects were told only that they should take notes on a lecture and that they would be tested. Dependent measures included two scores for the notes, including note quality and efficiency and the scores on a multiple choice posttest covering lecture material. A multivariate analysis of variance on the three dependent measures revealed a significant main effect for anxiety level only. Univariate analyses of variance and followup contrast tests on all three dependent measures showed that high levels of debilitative anxiety led to poorest performance on all dependent measures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-138
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Educational Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1984
Externally publishedYes


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