The Relationship between exam performance and emotion regulation capacity of university students

Kadirdağ, Borabay
The main objective of this thesis is to examine the effect of cognitive reappraisal and expressive suppression and on exam performance in Turkish university students. The study is based on the “appraisal-tendency framework” of Lerner and Keltner (2000) which defines “cognitive appraisal” as “cognitive meaning making that leads to emotions”, (Lerner, Li, Valdesolo, and Kassam, 2015). Expressive suppression, on the other hand, is defined as an aspect of emotional regulation where individuals mask their facial giveaways to hide their emotional states (Niedenthal, Ric, and Krauth-Gruber, 2006). Based on the cognitive reappraisal and expressive suppression abilities of the students, their affective responses (PANAS) to anxiety before and after watching a stress-inducing video were measured to find out if emotional regulation abilities influence exam performances of the students. 63 students with medium-level of exam anxiety based on the Test Anxiety Questionnaire (Nist and Diehl, 1990) participated. Responses based on PANAS scores indicate neither there was any significant difference of emotional regulation abilities on exam performance nor were they affected significantly by participants’ perception of the stressful video. Results of the emotional regulation abilities suggest that expressive suppression has a significant effect on exam performances. The students who suppressed the expression of their emotions less could increase their exam scores as measured in two exams at the beginning and end of the term.


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Citation Formats
B. Kadirdağ, “The Relationship between exam performance and emotion regulation capacity of university students,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2019.