JOURNAL CLUB FIND: SCIENCE AND ARACHNOPHOBIA
Fear of Spiders Questionnaire. (1995) Jeff Szymanski and William O’Donohue. J. Behav. Ther. & Exp. Psychiat. 26(1):31–34.
The Fear of Spiders Questionnaire (FSQ), an 18-item self-report questionnaire assessing spider phobia, was developed in an attempt to complement the information provided by the Spider Phobia Questionnaire (SPQ). Data obtained from 338 undergraduates revealed that the FSQ was able to discriminate phobics from nonphobics, and indicated decrements in phobic responding from pretest to posttest following cognitive therapy. Test-retest data, obtained from no-treatment control groups, indicated that scores on the FSQ are stable over a one month period. The FSQ also demonstrated adequate convergent validity due to its significant correlations with the SPQ and a behavioral avoidance test. Finally, a factor analysis revealed two factors accounting for 55% of the variance. It is argued that, compared to the SPQ, items on the FSQ are more explicit regarding the time period to be assessed, and may be more sensitive to differences between phobics and nonphobics and decrements in phobic responding following treatment.