Test anxiety in intellectually gifted school students

Moshe Zeidner, Esther Jane Schleyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This research, based on two independent studies, sheds light on a number of personal and contextual determinants of test anxiety in intellectually gifted student populations. Study 1 compared levels of test anxiety in a large-scale national Israeli sample of 772 gifted and 716 regular students in grades 4 through 9. Study 2 examined the effects of educational reference group (homogeneous versus heterogeneous classes) on test anxiety component scores of 1,780 gifted students in elementary and junior high school. Overall, gifted students were reported to be less test anxious than their nongifted counterparts. Test anxiety was shown to have a slightly greater negative impact upon school grades of normal than gifted students. Furthermore, these data attest to significant reference group effects for both academic self-concept and test anxiety, with gifted students showing higher test anxiety and lower academic self-concept in homogeneous gifted than mixed-ability mainstream classes. Overall, the data provide evidence highly consistent with reference group theory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-189
Number of pages27
JournalAnxiety, Stress and Coping
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Contextual factors
  • Educational settings
  • Gifted students
  • Intelligence
  • Text anxiety

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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