Social Anxiety and Withdrawal

  • Peter J. Norton
Part of the ABCT Clinical Assessment Series book series (ABCT)


Social anxiety, social withdrawal, and social skills are intertwined, but distinct, constructs that can mutually and independently have a significant impact on social functioning. Comprehensive definitions and descriptions of social skills are provided elsewhere in this volume; however, social anxiety is defined as a fear of negative evaluation by others and low self-confidence when performing or interacting in social situations (Rapee & Heimberg, 1997). In addition, social anxiety may be linked with poorer social-cognitive functioning, such as understanding the mental states of others in social interactions or assuming negative outcomes of social behaviors (Banerjee & Henderson, 2001; Rapee & Spence, 2004). Social anxiety is seen as existing on a continuum of intensity, from the low levels seen in socially gregarious individuals, through the typical anxiety experienced by most in situations such as public speaking, to




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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter J. Norton
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of HoustonHoustonUSA

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