Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Psychology


Clinical Psychology

Content Description

1 online resource (ii, 91 pages)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Mitch Earleywine

Committee Members

Drew Anderson, Julia M Hormes


Anxiety, Brief, Lovingkindness, Meditation, Mindfulness, Mood, Mindfulness (Psychology), Compassion, Kindness, Ānāpānasmr̥ti

Subject Categories

Clinical Psychology


Although meditation has been around for centuries, it’s only recently that the utility of such an ancient practice has gained popularity within Western psychology. A vast body of literature supports the notion that meditation can have important impacts on suffering and psychopathology; however, few studies have evaluated differential effects between various forms of meditation. The aims of this study are threefold: 1) to determine if a brief meditation can have immediate effects on an individuals’ mood, 2) to determine the validity of two different types of meditations (mindfulness and lovingkindness) and 3) to evaluate the differential efficacy of the two types of meditation, specifically, whether one is more effective than the other. 179 undergraduate students who were mostly novice meditators participated in the current study. Results demonstrated that both meditations were equally effective at decreasing anxiety and depressive cognitions after only one 15-minute meditation session. Additionally, both meditations demonstrated increases in self-reported self-compassion and mindfulness. Finally, it seems that breathing meditation may be more beneficial for novice meditators and that lovingkindness meditation may have the biggest effect when taught after one has been introduced to the basic mindfulness technique.