The present study seeks to determine the relationship between Terror Management Theory (TMT) and various measures of existential anxiety, future consciousness, and future-oriented thinking. By using TMT as a theoretical construct, a scale was devised to measure participants’ protective behaviors relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. Three other scales were utilized, including Lalot’s Future Consciousness Scale (FCS), Strathman’s Consideration of Future Consequences Scale (CFCS), and Weems’ Existential Anxiety Questionnaire (EAQ). The scales were combined into one composite survey along with demographic questions. 315 participants were then administered the collection of scales via an only survey platform. Results indicated strong significant correlations between the scale developed and the three other scales utilized. Multiple linear regression analyses revealed the three scales utilized were strong predictor variables of proximal and distal protective behaviors as predicted by TMT. The possibilities for future research include expansion of the knowledge regarding protective behaviors during widespread health issues, and how to design programs to maximize protective behaviors to minimize health risks.
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Sciences
Harkrider, Nicole L., "Terror Management Theory During COVID-19: Individual Differences in Death Anxiety Defenses" (2022). Honors Undergraduate Theses. 1145.