A person-centered application to test anxiety


Laurie L. Silverstein


Literature examining the treatment of test anxiety over the last few decades focuses primarily on the efficacy of cognitive and behavioral interventions (e.g., Allen, 1972; Meichenbaum, 1972, 1977). Over time, interventions have become even more symptom-specific (e.g., Broota & Sanghvi, 1994; Gosselin & Matthews, 1995). However, some researchers suggest that anxiety-focused approaches nay not improve performance, and skills acquisition and training nay not reduce anxiety (e.g., Klinger, I984; Paulman & Kennelley, I984). While some studies suggest that person-centered variables enhance therapeutic outcomes in the treatment of test anxiety, almost no literature exists comparing the efficacy of these different approaches (e.g., Ryan & Moses, 1979; Payne, 1985). A case summary describes a person-centered application to the treatment of test anxiety as a nondirective, individualized alternative to symptom-specific modalities.