Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis


Behavioral Sciences

First Advisor

Harvey J. Burnett, Jr.


This study is under a larger study on the efficacy of psychological first aid compared to expressive writing as a crisis intervention method for individuals exposed to a traumatic event using a randomized controlled trial (RCT). Research has shown that expressive writing can be beneficial to improve the mental and physical health of patients (Gortner, Rude, & Pennebaker, 2006). Research has shown that the use of positive emotion and insight words through expressive writing can reduce state anxiety (Shen, Yang, Zhang, & Zhang, 2018). This study examined the effect of expressive writing on state anxiety by comparing the intervention with a Superficial writing (control) condition. Using the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory-S Anxiety (Spielberger, 2010) to measure anxiety, subjects’ responses were analyzed using a two way ANOVA. Results indicated that there was a statistically significant difference in anxiety over time. These findings support the hypothesis of the study.

Subject Area

Anxiety; Written communication


Included in

Psychology Commons