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Interventions to reduce anxiety for gifted children and adolescents

Citation (APA Style): Gaesser, A. H. (2014). Interventions to reduce anxiety for gifted children and adolescents (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from http://digitalcommons.uconn.edu/dissertations/377 (Paper 377).


This study examined the anxiety levels of gifted students, as well as the effectiveness of two interventions: Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT). Using the Revised Children’s Manifest Anxiety Scale-2 (RCMAS-2), Phase I of this study examined anxiety levels in gifted youth (n = 153) participating in private and public gifted education programs, grades 6-12, in two Northeastern states. ANOVA analyses indicated that gender (F [1, 149] = 13.52, p< .001, h2= .08) and school setting (F [2, 149] = 21.41, p< .001, h2= .23) were significant factors in the anxiety levels of the gifted students. In Phase II, a randomized controlled research design was used to investigate the effectiveness of CBT and EFT interventions. Participants (n = 63) identified with moderate to high levels of anxiety on the pre treatment RCMAS-2 were assigned to one of three treatment groups: a) CBT, b) EFT, or c) a wait-listed control group. Treatment outcomes were measured using the RCMAS-2 post treatment scores and analyzed using ANCOVA with pre treatment RCMAS-2 scores serving as the covariate. EFT participants (n= 20, M = 52.163, SE = 1.42) showed significant reduction in anxiety levels when compared to the control group (n= 21, M = 57.93, SE = 1.39, p = .005). CBT participants (n= 21, M = 54.82, SE = 1.38) did not differ significantly from either the EFT or control groups (p = .12 and p = .18, respectively).

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