Does Appraisal Mediate the Relationship Between Neuroticism and Maladaptive Coping? A Pilot Study in the Context of University Exams
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This pilot study examined relationships between neuroticism, appraisal, and coping in a sample of undergraduate students (N = 77) prior to sitting university exams. Results replicated previous findings that neuroticism is significantly correlated with avoidance coping and maladaptive forms of emotion focused coping (such as emotional venting), whilst overcoming the limitations of dispositional coping measures and minimizing the time-lags associated with retrospective coping measurement. Results also offered partial support for the goodness of fit hypothesis; however, stress and controllability appraisals did not mediate the relationships between neuroticism and either avoidance coping or emotional venting. Limitations of using university exams as a stressor are identified and it is concluded that laboratory tasks, in which controllability can be experimentally manipulated, are likely to be useful in determining whether or not stressor appraisals mediate the relationship between neuroticism and coping.
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