Cognitive Therapy and Research

, Volume 31, Issue 3, pp 273-289

First online:

Cognitive Bias in Men's Processing of Negative Social Information: The Role of Social Anxiety, Toughness as a Masculine Role Norm, and Their Interaction

  • Monroe A. BruchAffiliated withDepartment of Educational and Counseling Psychology, University at AlbanyDepartment of Educational and Counseling Psychology, University at Albany Email author 

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Cognitive approaches to social anxiety focus on a person's tendency to make biased judgments for threat-relevant stimuli. This notion was tested relative to whether men's adherence to a toughness male role norm moderates the relation between social anxiety and biased judgments for negative interpersonal events. For negative interpersonal events not involving male role norms, results indicated that only social anxiety was related to probability estimates, while for cost estimates there was a unique association for social anxiety and a significant social anxiety by toughness interaction such that men who were high in both made greater cost estimates. For events involving explicit male role norms, social anxiety and toughness evidenced unique relationships with probability estimates. For cost estimates, in addition to unique associations for social anxiety and toughness, there was a significant interaction, which showed that men high in both characteristics gave the highest cost ratings.


cognitive bias cognitive models of social anxiety shyness masculine ideology gender role-conflict