Gender and Locus of Control as Predictors of Accidental Death Anxiety.Reportar como inadecuado

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Numerous studies on death anxiety report conflicting findings. Concluding that a lack of specificity may explain the mixed results, this study sought to address the lack of focus and to extend and validate the results of an earlier study. A sample of 152 undergraduate students (111 female) from middle to upper-middle class participated. Subjects were informed that the study dealt with general life experiences and that some of the material might be unsettling. Researchers assessed predictor and criterion variables with a number of instruments. Results indicate that the strongest correlate of accidental-death anxiety was self-deception, followed by gender and locus of control. Not surprisingly, males tended to endorse the use of self-deception more often than females, which may reflect society's description of masculine traits: unafraid, strong, in control. Likewise, an internal locus of control -- mirroring subjects' perceived ability to manipulate their environment -- apparently helps individuals cope with the notion of dying accidentally. Females were found to be more external than males, indicating the women's relative lack of perceived control over their environment. The results lend conceptual support to the notion that increasing the specificity of items when assessing a particular construct increases predictive accuracy. (RJM)

Descriptors: Accidents, Anxiety, Death, Higher Education, Locus of Control, Predictive Measurement, Predictive Validity, Predictor Variables, Psychological Patterns, Self Concept, Sex Differences, Undergraduate Students, Young Adults

Autor: Johnston, Dennis A.; Sherman, Martin F.


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