Information-processing bias in social phobia

Clin Psychol Rev. 2004 Nov;24(7):799-825. doi: 10.1016/j.cpr.2004.07.005.


Social phobia is a persistent disorder that is unlikely to be maintained by avoidance alone. One reason for the enduring nature of social phobia may be the way individuals with the disorder process social information. It is important for those involved in social phobia to have an understanding of information-processing biases, because it has the potential to guide psychological interventions. In this review of social phobia, probability and cost estimates of social situations are examined, interpretive biases are evaluated and findings relating to memory and negative imagery are also reviewed. The clinical implications of social-phobia-related information-processing biases are discussed and possible avenues for future research are outlined.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Autobiographies as Topic
  • Facial Expression
  • Humans
  • Imagination
  • Memory Disorders / epidemiology
  • Mental Processes*
  • Phobic Disorders / epidemiology
  • Phobic Disorders / psychology*
  • Social Perception
  • Vocabulary