Direct and indirect effects of looming cognitive style via social cognitions on social anxiety, depression, and hostility Academic Article uri icon


  • Based on the looming vulnerability model, we hypothesized that mental simulations of scenarios rapidly intensifying and heading in a more threatening direction, as assessed by the looming cognitive style (LCS; Riskind, Williams, Theodore, Chrosniak, & Cortina, 2000), would have effects on social anxiety. Moreover, we expected that these simulations could affect social anxiety through both a direct and an indirect route mediated by verbal social cognitions. Consistent with these hypotheses, structural equations analyses on data from Spanish university and professional students (N = 547) indicated direct and indirect links between looming cognitive style and social anxiety. In addition, similar but smaller effects of looming cognitive style were found on depression symptoms, and a small indirect effect of looming cognitive style was found to be hostility. Together, these findings are consistent with the view that dynamic simulations of patterns of dynamic changes and forward progress of threat play an impor...

publication date

  • January 1, 2013