Cognitive Therapy and Research

, Volume 40, Issue 1, pp 46–56 | Cite as

Anxious but Thoroughly Informed? No Jumping-to-Conclusions Bias in Social Anxiety Disorder

  • Björn Schlier
  • Sylvia Helbig-Lang
  • Tania Marie Lincoln
Original Article


Social anxiety disorder (SAD) is maintained by biased information processing, which might involve hasty decision making. This study tested whether SAD is associated with jumping-to-conclusions in neutral and socially threatening situations. Sixty participants with SAD and 56 healthy controls completed a beads-task and a Social Beads-Task (SBT) with neutral, threat-relevant, and self-relevant situations. Dependent variables were draws to decision (DTD) and certainty about the decision. In the beads-task, participants with SAD showed more DTD than controls. In the SBT, all participants drew fewer beads in threat- and self-relevant situations than in neutral scenarios. Participants with SAD reported higher certainty regarding their decision in the beads-task and in the threat- and self-relevant scenarios of the SBT. Jumping-to-conclusions increases when decision making is framed in a threatening or social-evaluative context. SAD may be linked to more certainty about decisions, but findings on group differences require further investigation.


Social anxiety disorder Reasoning bias Jumping to conclusions 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Björn Schlier, Sylvia Helbig-Lang, and Tania Lincoln declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Informed Consent

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the national research committee (approved by the ethical review committee of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Psychologie, DGPs) and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments. Informed consent was obtained from all individual subjects participating in the study.

Animal Rights

No animal studies were carried out by the authors for this article.

Supplementary material

10608_2015_9724_MOESM1_ESM.docx (30 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 30 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Björn Schlier
    • 1
  • Sylvia Helbig-Lang
    • 1
  • Tania Marie Lincoln
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Clinical Psychology and PsychotherapyUniversity of HamburgHamburgGermany

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