Experiment to Study the Effects of Fear and Anger on Perceived Threats of Terrorism

2173 Words9 Pages
Summary 1 Lerner, Gonzalez, Small and Fischhoff (2003) undertook an experiment to study the effects of fear and anger on perceived threats of terrorism. The design of the experiment was a national field study. To acquire a nationally representative sample of American’s, the researchers drew a random sample of 1786 people, aged 13-88, from Knowledge Networks nationally representative panel. These people were randomly assigned to complete a survey and numerous psychosocial scales. The two psychosocial scales that the subjects had to complete were the five-item anxiety subscale (Stanford Acute Stress Reaction Questionnaire) and a four item face-valid Desire for Vengeance Scale. An example of a statement in the Desire for Vengeance test is “I felt a need to punish those responsible for the recent terrorist attacks.” Subjects had to rate these statements on a scale of 1(disagree) to 2 (agree.) An example statement from the anxiety test is “I had difficulty falling or staying asleep.” Participants had to rate this statement from 0 (not experienced) to 5 (very often experienced). Of these 1786 participants, 927 of them completed an additional survey and psychosocial tests. 143 were adolescents and the remainder was adults. Each of these subsamples included 49% males, and the demographics roughly matched the census statistics. Each person was randomly assigned to one of three emotion conditions. The emotion conditions were angry, sad and afraid. The participants had to firstly
Open Document