Social skills, social outcomes, and cognitive features of childhood social phobia

Susan H. Spence*, Caroline Donovan, Margaret Brechman-Toussaint

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

296 Citations (Scopus)


Social skills social outcomes, self-talk, outcome expectancies, and self-evaluation of performance during social-evaluative tasks were examined with 27 clinically diagnosed social phobic children ages 7-14 and a matched nonclinical group. Results showed that, compared with their nonanxious peers, social phobic children demonstrated lower expected performance and a higher level of negative self-talk on social-evaluative tasks. In addition, social phobic children showed social skills deficits as assessed by self- and parent report, an assertiveness questionnaire, and direct behavioral observation. Furthermore, compared with the control group, social phobic children were rated by themselves and others as significantly less socially competent with peers and were found to be less likely to receive positive outcomes from peers during behavioral observation. Implications for the assessment and treatment of childhood social phobia are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-221
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Abnormal Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 1999

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