Anxiety can be caused by such factors as stress at school, a stressful relationship, family problems, emotional trauma, serious disease, and many others. Apart from outside stressors, there can be biological preconditions for anxiety. In its turn, anxiety negatively influences the educational process and the person’s concentration. Thus, this paper discovers the impacts that anxiety has on studies and students’ concentration as well as its biological causes.
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Anxiety is a condition that frequently troubles students, and the number of young people affected by it is increasing (Rix, 2015). Scholars define anxiety as “a response which encompasses physiological, affective, and cognitive changes” (Robinson, Vytal, Cornwell, & Grillon, 2013, p. 1). It is a proven fact that anxiety has a negative influence on cognition, which is the ‘information processing’ of a person (Robinson, 2013).
First of all, anxiety distracts a person’s attention from important things, which can negatively affect the learning process. Moreover, anxiety has an impact on short-term memory, which is crucial for learning. Also, it causes problems with concentration. As a result, students who experience anxiety demonstrate worse academic performance than those who are not anxious.
As for the biological aspect of anxiety, such factors as genetics, brain chemistry, and the issue of fight-or-flight response should be mentioned. Researchers provide evidence that anxiety has genetic roots meaning that there is a certain predisposition to anxiety disorders (Thompson, 2017). As for brain chemistry, the studies prove that the same neurotransmitters that cause depression, such as serotonin and norepinephrine, can influence the development of anxiety. Finally, a fight-or-flight response, which is an automatic reaction of the brain to stress, both real or perceived, can also cause anxiety.
On the whole, anxiety is a person’s response to stress provided by the environment. It is guided by biological processes and cannot be immediately controlled. It negatively influences academic performance because anxious people have worse memory and cannot concentrate on the subject.
Rix, J. (2015). How anxiety scrambles your brain and makes it hard to learn. The Guardian. Web.
Robinson, O. J., Vytal, K., Cornwell, B. R., & Grillon, C. (2013). The impact of anxiety upon cognition: Perspectives from human threat of shock studies. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7, 1-21.
Thompson, K. (2017). Biological perspectives on anxiety. Live Strong. Web.