The origins of fear of snakes
In the present study, a questionnaire about the nature and origin of fear of snakes was administered to 60 Phobic, 82 Low Fear and 35 High Fear college students. Phobic and High Fear subjects reported greater fear on a variety of components of snake fear. There was little evidence supporting the role of direct conditioning experiences in the acquisition of fear of snakes. Rather, the results suggested a variety of observational and instructional learning experiences as related to the acquisition of snake fear. Although preparedness for direct conditioning does not seem relevant, a preparedness for observational and instructional learning is possible.