Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Chair and Committee
Despite its inherently interpersonal nature, the specific ways in which social anxiety symptoms interact with and impact friendships has not been well-studied. Research suggests that social anxiety, when compared with other psychological disorders, has a specific relationship with friendship impairment; however, the mechanisms that explain how this impairment functions over time are not well-understood. The current study sought to test whether interpersonal styles--dependence, avoidance, warmth, dominance, and emotional expressivity--mediate the relationship between social anxiety and both self- and friend-report friendship functioning over time. Participants consisted of undergraduate students who nominated a friend to participate in the study; both the participants and their friends filled out questionnaires assessing friendship functioning. The friend dyads were again asked to fill out questionnaires assessing friendship functioning 2 to 3 months later. Using longitudinal mediation analyses, models testing each interpersonal style as a mediator between social anxiety at Time 1 and both self- and friend-report friendship functioning independently at Time 2 were tested. None of the interpersonal styles significantly longitudinally mediated the relationship between social anxiety at Time 1 and friendship functioning at Time 2. Potential reasons for the lack of significant findings are discussed and suggestions for future research are explored.
Fernandez, Katya Christine, "A Multidimensional Approach to the Study of Social Anxiety and Friendships" (2014). All Theses and Dissertations (ETDs). 1300.