A simple anxiety test
Now we are confident that the tachistoscope is working properly we can make a second tachistoscope.
With two tachistoscopes we can perform the real research as described in the theory.
In preparation of this research we can think about a simple anxiety test.
What do we need for such a test?
We present a person two pictures after each other.
The task will be to identify the second picture.
The second picture is a member of a collection of known persons to the person who is performing the test.
These kown persons are limited in number e.g. 6 or 10
or what is manageable.
The identification of these known persons is trained
before the actual test.
The training consists of presenting at random the known persons very fast with different presentation speeds e.g. 10 milliseconds, 20 ms, 30 ms, 40ms, 100 ms.
One can consider to present multiple different pictures of the same person.
The identification must be 100% correct.
When this phase is completed the actual test can be performed.
By means of the first picture we want to establish the domain in which fear develops e.g. animals such as spiders, dogs, flies and so on.
Or other fear evoking things such as places: toilet, bathroom, cellar, narrow street, and so on
Or persons: father mother, uncle, sisters, brothers friends
So we expect the following:
when a person is afraid of dogs then we expect that the identification of a known person will drop when as a first picture a dog is presented.
So after the test we can establish by means of low identification scores of the second photograph where the fear lies for this person. Low scores on the second picture gives us an indication of existing anxiety connected to the first picture. We can trace back the source of the anxiety.
The trick in this approach lies in finding the right time relation between first en second photograph. The presentation time of the first photo must be as short as possible to trigger anxiety when anxiety is connected to this photograph.
When the presentation time of the first picture is too long conscious mechanisms will take over and there will be no influence of the anxiety connected to the first picture on the identification of the second photograph.
The duration of the presentation time of the second picture or photograph must be just as long as to be able to, without
anxiety present as a result of the first picture, identify this second picture.