ERIC Number: EJ793203
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Reference Count: 10
Perceptions of Threat: Understanding Pathways between Stress and Health in Adolescents
Chen, Edith; Hanson, Margaret D.
Prevention Researcher, v12 n3 p10-12 2005
Stress has been related to both lower socioeconomic status and poorer health. This research tests a model which suggests that teenagers from varying socioeconomic backgrounds differ not only in terms of exposure to negative life events, but also in their interpretation of life situations. Study participants were 100 high school students (roughly half African American, the other half Caucasian). Students watched two different videos in a laboratory setting, one consisting of an ambiguous situation, the other a negative situation. Students answered open-ended questions, completed a questionnaire, and had their heart rate and blood pressure monitored. Results found that lower socioeconomic adolescents were more likely to interpret the ambiguous social situations as threatening, suggesting that interventions aimed at minimizing youth's threat interpretations may reduce the physiological toll associated with these perceptions.
Descriptors: Metabolism, Adolescents, Correlation, Stress Variables, Child Health, Socioeconomic Status, Socioeconomic Influences, Environmental Influences, African American Students, White Students, High School Students, Videotape Recordings, Emotional Response, Intervention, Social Influences, Fear, Anxiety, Psychological Patterns, Physical Health
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools
Authoring Institution: N/A