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Class Anxiety in Secondary Education: Exploring Structural Relations with Perceived Control, Engagement, Disaffection, and Performance

  • Antonio González (a1), José María Faílde Garrido (a1), Yolanda Rodríguez Castro (a1) and María Victoria Carrera Rodríguez (a1)

The aim of this study was to assess the relationships between class-related anxiety with perceived control, teacher-reported behavioral engagement, behavioral disaffection, and academic performance. Participants were 355 compulsory secondary students (9th and 10th grades; Mean age = 15.2 years; SD = 1.8 years). Structural equation models revealed performance was predicted by perceived control, anxiety, disaffection, and engagement. Perceived control predicted anxiety, disaffection, and engagement. Anxiety predicted disaffection and engagement, and partially mediated the effects from control on disaffection (β = –.277, p < .005; CI = –.378, –.197) and engagement (β = .170, p < .002; CI = .103 .258). The negative association between anxiety and performance was mediated by engagement and disaffection (β = –.295, p < .002; CI = –.439, –.182). Anxiety, engagement, and disaffection mediated the effects of control on performance (β = .352, p < .003; CI = .279, .440). The implications of these results are discussed in the light of current theory and educational interventions.

Corresponding author
*Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Antonio González. Universidad de Vigo. Facultad C.C. de la Educación. Ourense (Spain). E-mail:
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