Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 275–287

Comorbidity of test anxiety and other anxiety disorders in children


  • Deborah C. Beidel
    • Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
  • Samuel M. Turner
    • Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

DOI: 10.1007/BF00913800

Cite this article as:
Beidel, D.C. & Turner, S.M. J Abnorm Child Psychol (1988) 16: 275. doi:10.1007/BF00913800


Elementary school children with clinically significant test anxiety, as determined by self-report and a clinical interview, were assessed for the incidence of other fears and anxiety. The results indicated that test-anxious children reported more fears and general worries than their non-test-anxious peers. As expected, the test-anxious children experienced more negative cognitions and subjective distress when taking a test. Furthermore, the fear of negative evaluation was not limited to an actual test, since these children also reported identical symptoms when engaged in a second social-evaluative task. Finally, 60% of the testanxious sample met DSM-III criteria for an anxiety disorder. The results are discussed in terms of the relationship of text anxiety to more complex social-evaluative dysfunctions, more pervasive anxiety conditions, DSM-III anxiety disorders, and the utility of test anxiety as an indicator of the presence of these more pervasive anxiety states.

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© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1988