The purpose of this study is to determine whether participants who are informed of a phenomenon termed "the illusion of transparency" (Gilovich, Savitsky & Medvec, 1998) give higher quality speeches, feel and appear less anxious while delivering the speech, and give longer speeches. Participants consisted of 543 students from a Midwestern university. First they completed the FNE (Watson & Friend, 1969), and 31 of those with the top quartile of scores returned to the lab to give a 3-minute speech. Participants in the illusion condition were informed about what the illusion of transparency is, while those in the reassured condition were told not to worry about their anxiety. Those in the control condition were given no instructions. Participants and observers rated the speeches on a number of items regarding anxiety and quality. Results were not consistent with previous research, and are discussed in terms of the current study.


Barry Ries

First Committee Member

Karla Lassonde

Second Committee Member

Kathleen Foord

Date of Degree




Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)




Social and Behavioral Sciences

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License



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