[Clark, D. M., & Wells, A. (1995). A cognitive model of social phobia. In: R. G. Heimberg, M. R. Liebowitz, D. A. Hope, & F. R. Schneier (Eds.), Social phobia: diagnosis, assessment, and treatment (pp. 69–93). New York: Guildford Press] cognitive model of social phobia suggests that both public and private sources of information contribute to the construction of the self as a social object, which is thought to maintain the disorder. This study used two concepts developed in social psychology that might help to explain the processes that contribute to the development of this constructed self. These two concepts are the spotlight effect [Gilovich, T., Medvec, V. H., & Savitsky, K. (2000). The spotlight effect in social judgment: an egocentric bias in estimates of the salience of one’s own actions and appearance. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 78(2), 211–222] and the illusion of transparency [Gilovich, T., Medvec, V. H., & Savitsky, K. (1998). The Illusion of transparency: biased assessments of others’ ability to read one’s own emotional states. Journal of personality and social psychology, 75(2), 332–346]. Participants performed a memory task under either a low or a high social-evaluative condition. In the high social-evaluative condition, participants reported higher levels of the spotlight effect and more negative evaluation of task performance, compared to participants in the low social-evaluative condition. There were no differences between the two conditions in levels of the illusion of transparency. Surprisingly, however, in the low socialevaluative condition, participants reported higher levels of the illusion of transparency than the spotlight effect, whereas, in the high social-evaluative condition, they reported the opposite. Results suggest that the spotlight effect may be specific to social-evaluative concerns, whereas, the illusion of transparency may represent more general features of social anxiety concerns. Implications of the results for Clark and Wells’ cognitive model of social phobia model are discussed
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