Thirty-two male social drinkers were randomly assigned to one of two expectancy conditions in which they were led to believe that the beverage they consumed contained either vodka and tonic or tonic only. For half of the subjects in each expectancy condition, the beverage actually contained vodka; the others drank only tonic. After their drinks, subjects' heart rates were monitored during a brief social interaction with a female confederate. Self-report and questionnaire measures of social anxiety were taken before and after the interaction. Subjects who believed that they had consumed alcohol showed significantly less increase in heart rate than those who believed that they consumed tonic only, regardless of the actual content of their drinks. There was no effect of alcohol per se. The theoretical implications of these results are briefly discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Clinical Psychology