Bachelor of Science
Dr. Alisha Marciano
Dr. David Freier
Dr. Christine Terry
Over the past two years, the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has resulted in long-lasting damage, an increase in mood disorder diagnoses, and an increased spread of misinformation. It was this study’s focus to determine whether exposure to misinformation about SARS-CoV-2 affected anxiety, conspiracy beliefs, and vaccine hesitancy. Participants completed a pre- and post-test State-Trait Anxiety Inventory for perceived anxiety measurement alongside the Perceived Stress Scale. Participants were also connected to biofeedback machines for physiological anxiety measurement. Participants completed the Conspiracy Mentality Scale, Conspiracy Belief Scale, Vaccine Conspiracy Belief Scale, and the Vaccine Hesitancy Scale for conspiracy belief measurement. It was hypothesized that exposure to misinformation would result in greater anxiety and greater conspiracy belief and vaccine hesitancy. Data suggests that exposure to misinformation resulted in greater perceived anxiety, and exposure to any SARS-CoV-2 information increased the physiological anxiety response. Results from the State Trait Anxiety Inventory and physiological anxiety suggest that any information regarding SARS-CoV-2 can be anxiety producing.
Yeager, William Alexandr, "Effect of SARS-Cov-2 Vaccine Misinformation on Conspiracy Belief and Anxiety" (2022). Undergraduate Theses and Capstone Projects. 258.