Correlation Between Circadian Rhythms and Examination Anxiety in Adolescents
Author : Pavitra Narayanan
American Embassy School
Students of all ages face some degree of pressure and nervousness when it comes to examinations. While preparing for those tests, it is especially common for teenagers to study late into the night and wake up feeling a sense of exhaustion in the morning. This paper analyzes existing literature pertaining to the effects of circadian rhythm cycles and test-related anxiety in 39 teenagers between the ages of 14 and 18 using the SCRAM Questionnaire developed by Byrne et al. and the Test Attitude Inventory created by Charles D. Spielberger. The results showed that females generally had a lower quality of sleep and higher levels of depressive emotions compared with males which are consistent with other research. However, a discrepancy from existing literature was found as females showed lower levels of morningness than males. Overall findings show that there is a weak correlation between circadian rhythm and exam anxiety suggesting other factors might be responsible for test anxiety. The results may provide some support in the educational sectors in terms of determining school timings and addressing the issue of examination stress in students.