Negative affectivity and responses to work stressors : an experimental study

O'Brien, Anne, Terry, Deborah J., & Jimmieson, Nerina L. (2008) Negative affectivity and responses to work stressors : an experimental study. Anxiety Stress and Coping, 21(1), pp. 55-83.

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An experiment tested the hypothesis that individuals high in negative affectivity (NA) show increased stress reactivity to stressors. There were three predictor variables: NA (measured 1 week prior to experimental participation), and two manipulated variables—demand (high/low) and behavioral control (high/low). First-year psychology students (n=256) were randomly allocated to one of the four experimental conditions. Measures obtained were initial and post-task negative mood, coping strategies, task satisfaction, and performance (subjective and objective). Participants with high levels of NA reported more post-task negative mood in response to high demand conditions, compared to participants with low NA. A similar pattern of results emerged for task satisfaction, particularly in response to high demand-low behavioral control situations. Mediation analyses suggested this was because participants with high NA used more emotion-focused coping strategies. The study provides support for the stress reactivity role of NA in the stressor-strain process.

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16 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 71575
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Negative affectivity, stress reactivity, demand, control, coping strategies
DOI: 10.1080/10615800701529504
ISSN: 1061-5806
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Management
Deposited On: 18 May 2014 22:29
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2015 03:23

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