Anxiety And Library Anxiety

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The transition from high school to college is an arduous process; students are torn from the structured environment of high school and flung into the chaos of college life where one is expected to be fully independent. It is no wonder, then, that some students crumple beneath the heavy weight of change and succumb to stress. First defined as “the non-specific response of the body to any demand for change” in 1936 by Hans Selye, stress was considered to be synonymous with distress. (The American Institute of Stress, n.d.) This association has caused stress to be generalised as a negative emotion, ignoring the positive effects stress can generate. Anxiety and stress goes hand in hand; while anxiety can be caused by environmental and medical factors, it is most commonly triggered by stress. Considered a general term for several disorders that can cause nervousness, apprehension and fear – anxiety can be further subcategorised into anxieties which are linked to academia (Crosta, 2013). This essay will touch upon library anxiety, a few of these anxieties would be library anxiety, writing anxiety, math anxiety and test anxiety.
Library anxiety was first discovered by Mellon (1986) in a qualitative study of college students’ feelings about using the library. College requires research to be performed in order to complete a project or paper, and students who are fresh out of high school are often out of their depth as they have never been to a college library. It was found that such students describe their initial reaction to library research in terms of fear, and it presented itself in three ways – students believed their research skills to be inadequate when compared to other students, perceived their feelings of inadequacy to be embar...

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