Developmental students sources of self-efficacy and the university academic support program impact



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Texas Tech University


The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the importance of the four sources of self-efficacy (verbal persuasions, mastery experiences, psychological feedback, and vicarious experiences) through testing a path model that posits a relation between the four sources of self-efficacy, expectations, and motivation outcomes. Studies investigating how the sources of self-efficacy can impact developmental students’ academic success have not been conducted. Therefore, the justification to complete the current study included, but was not limited to, the lack of previous research, the importance of university academic support programs to the university, and to provide the findings to enhance university academic support programs.
The theoretical approach to self-efficacy and the basis for the current study have been provided by the Social Cognitive Theory (Bandura, 1986). In previous research, the Social Cognitive Theory has been successfully applied to education at a university level and there has been research completed with students; however, there has not been specific research completed which dealt with developmental students and academia.
The population includes students who are part of the Texas Success Initiative (TSI) Program and enrolled in a TSI liable course. Developmental students included freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior. There were 698 students enrolled in the TSI program in the fall of 2007. Of the 698 students requested to complete the survey, 382 students responded which is a completion rate of 54.7%. Path analysis was the research method used.
In order to conduct the path analysis accurately, the six variables, verbal persuasions, mastery experience, physiological feedback, vicarious experiences, motivation, and outcome expectations, were converted to z scores. Once all data had been converted to z scores, data was calculated for means and standard deviations for each of the six scales. Once data was converted, reliability and validity measures were completed. The Cronbach’s alpha coefficient for the scales ranged from the lowest of .862 for the Expectation Scale to the highest of .938 for Academic Achievement Scale. Correlation for the total sample was completed, along with confirmatory factor analysis. The path analysis was found to be a perfect fit between data and the proposed model.



Developmental students, Self-efficacy, Education