The Effects of Stress on State Anxiety in Air Traffic Controllers.
AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OHIO
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The effects of perceived shift difficulty and air traffic density on the state anxiety A-State of USAF air traffic controllers ATCs were evaluated. ATCs rated the difficulty of day, swing and mid shift work periods at the middle and end of selected work shifts. The A-Trait Scale of the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory STAI was administered at the beginning of the study and the STAI A-State Scale was given at the beginning, at the middle, and the end of selected work shifts. A-State levels were found to be higher on difficult shifts than easy shifts. Increases in state anxiety over time were found within the day and swing shifts, while levels of A-State were low and relatively stable in the mid shift. While estimates of shift difficulty indicated that high traffic density shifts were harder than low traffic density shifts, surprisingly, low traffic density work periods aroused higher levels of state anxiety than high TD periods.