Shyness and academic adjustment in Chinese high school students: The mediating role of self-focused attention model

  • Liang Li
  • Xiaoyi Wang
  • Fengqiang Gao
  • Yingmin ChenEmail author


This study examined the influence of self-focused attention (rumination and reflection) on the relationship between shyness and academic adjustment in a Chinese adolescent sample. Seven hundred and six senior high school students (383 girls, 323 boys; 231 grade one, 238 grade two, 237 grade three) from two Chinese public secondary schools completed anonymous questionnaires regarding shyness, self-focused attention, and academic adjustment. Results indicated that 1) shyness was negatively related to academic adjustment; 2) rumination mediated the association between shyness and academic adjustment; 3) the mediating role of reflection was not significant. These findings demonstrated the contribution of rumination to the academic adjustment of timid students. Shy students in high school tend to adopt rumination model rather than a reflection model in their daily academic life, and this approach may harm their academic adjustment.


Shyness Rumination Reflection Academic adjustment 



This study was supported by project of National Social Science Foundation of China (13BSH061) and Humanities and Social Sciences Research Foundation of Ministry of Education of China (17YJA190004).

Author’s Contributions

LL contributed to writing, data analysis, and the design of the work. XW conducted experiments. YC, and FG contributed in polishing the manuscript.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

This study was authorized by the Ethics Committee of School of psychology, Shandong Normal University, Shandong, China. What’s more, this study was approved by parents, school authorities and principals. All subjects and their parents/legal guardians signed informed consent.

Conflict of Interest

We wish to confirm that there are no known conflicts of interest associated with this publication and there has been no significant financial support for this work that could have influenced its outcome.

Informed Consent

We confirm that the manuscript has been read and approved by all named authors and that there are no other persons who satisfied the criteria for authorship but are not listed. We further confirm that the order of authors listed in the manuscript has been approved by all of us.

We understand that our Corresponding Author is the sole contact for the Editorial process (including Editorial Manager and direct communications with the office). They are responsible for communicating with the other authors about progress, submissions of revisions and final approval of proofs. We confirm that we have provided a current, correct email address which is accessible by the Corresponding Author and which has been configured to accept email from

Data Statement

No data sets have been specified by the author for the following reason: The data that has been used is confidential. Due to the sensitive nature of the questions asked in this study, survey respondents were assured raw data would remain confidential and would not be shared.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of PsychologyShandong Normal UniversityJi’nanChina
  2. 2.Weifang Middle SchoolWeifangChina

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