Self-Efficacy: The Exercise of Control

Published on Jan 1, 1997
Albert Bandura6
Estimated H-index: 6
(Stanford University)
Albert Bandura and the Exercise of Self-Efficacy Self-Efficacy: The Exercise of Control Albert Bandura. New York: W. H. Freeman ( 1997, 604 pp., $46.00 (hardcover). Enter the term "self-efficacy" in the on-line PSYCLIT database and you will find over 2500 articles, all of which stem from the seminal contributions of Albert Bandura. It is difficult to do justice to the immense importance of this research for our theories, our practice, and indeed for human welfare. Self-efficacy (SE) has proven to be a fruitful construct in spheres ranging from phobias (Bandura, Jeffery, & Gajdos, 1975) and depression (Holahan & Holahan, 1987) to career choice behavior (Betz & Hackett, 1986) and managerial functioning (Jenkins, 1994). Bandura's Self-Efficacy: The Exercise of Control is the best attempt so far at organizing, summarizing, and distilling meaning from this vast and diverse literature. Self-Efficacy may prove to be Bandura's magnum opus. Dr. Bandura has done an impressive job of summarizing over 1800 studies and papers, integrating these results into a coherent framework, and detailing implications for theory and practice. While incorporating prior works such as Social Learning Theory (Bandura, 1977) and "Self-efficacy mechanism in human agency" (Bandura, 1982), Self-Efficacy extends these works by describing results of diverse new research, clarifying and extending social cognitive theory, and fleshing out implications of the theory for groups, organizations, political bodies, and societies. Along the way, Dr. Bandura masterfully contrasts social cognitive theory with many other theories of human behavior and helps chart a course for future research. Throughout, B andura' s clear, firm, and self-confident writing serves as the perfect vehicle for the theory he espouses. Self-Efficacy begins with the most detailed and clear explication of social cognitive theory that I have yet seen, and proceeds to delineate the nature and sources of SE, the well-known processes via which SE mediates human behavior, and the development of SE over the life span. After laying this theoretical groundwork, subsequent chapters delineate the relevance of SE to human endeavor in a variety of specific content areas including cognitive and intellectual functioning; health; clinical problems including anxiety, phobias, depression, eating disorders, alcohol problems, and drug abuse; athletics and exercise activity; organizations; politics; and societal change. In Bandura's words, "Perceived self-efficacy refers to beliefs in one's capabilities to organize and execute the courses of action required to produce given attainments" (p. 3). People's SE beliefs have a greater effect on their motivation, emotions, and actions than what is objectively true (e.g., actual skill level). Therefore, SE beliefs are immensely important in choice of behaviors (including occupations, social relationships, and a host of day-to-day behaviors), effort expenditure, perseverance in pursuit of goals, resilience to setbacks and problems, stress level and affect, and indeed in our ways of thinking about ourselves and others. Bandura affirms many times that humans are proactive and free as well as determined: They are "at least partial architects of their own destinies" (p. 8). Because SE beliefs powerfully affect human behaviors, they are a key factor in human purposive activity or agency; that is, in human freedom. Because humans shape their environment even as they are shaped by it, SE beliefs are also pivotal in the construction of our social and physical environments. Bandura details over two decades of research confirming that SE is modifiable via mastery experiences, vicarious learning, verbal persuasion, and interpretation of physiological states, and that modified SE strongly and consistently predicts outcomes. SE beliefs, then, are central to human self-determination. STRENGTHS One major strength of Self-Efficacy is Bandura's ability to deftly dance from forest to trees and back again to forest, using specific, human examples and concrete situations to highlight his major theoretical premises, to which he then returns. …
📖 Papers frequently viewed together
41.9k Citations
24.9k Citations
19.4k Citations
Cited By29564
This study examined how developing an engineering identity through the interplay between interest, recognition, and performance/competence beliefs and establishing a sense of belonging supported women’s persistence beliefs in engineering. Persistence belief in this study is captured through women’s certainty of graduating with an engineering degree. Students’ levels of motivation, affective states, and actions are based on what students believe to be true. Data were gathered from a survey admini...
#1Jacqueline S. Stephen (Mercer University)H-Index: 1
#2Amanda J. Rockinson-Szapkiw (U of M: University of Memphis)H-Index: 12
Student enrollment continues to increase in online programs, but there is concern surrounding the reportedly high rates of attrition in online classes compared to face-to-face classes. Undergraduate students are poorly prepared and lack the human agency necessary for success in the online learning environment. To address the lack of persistence of undergraduate online students, universities must create and implement interventions that prepare students for the online learning environment and help...
#1Wenhao Wang (ECNU: East China Normal University)
#2Weijun Ma (ECNU: East China Normal University)
Abstract This paper aims to determine the precise meaning of the word “meaning” in the context of the sense of meaning and to explain the characteristics of meaning and meaning in life. Using ordinary language analysis and phenomenology, this paper defines meaning as the possibility of something to realize its goal: the effectiveness of a thing in realizing the goal. Thus, this paper aims to establish a Meaning Effectiveness Model (MEM), which regards meaning as a function of goal and effectiven...
#1Madison E. Andrews (University of Texas at Austin)H-Index: 3
#2Maura Borrego (University of Texas at Austin)H-Index: 35
Last. Audrey Boklage (University of Texas at Austin)H-Index: 2
view all 3 authors...
In recent years, makerspaces have become increasingly common venues of STEM education and are rapidly being incorporated into undergraduate programs. These spaces give students and instructors access to advanced design technology and facilitate the incorporation of a wide variety of projects into the curriculum; however, their impacts on students are not yet fully understood. Using matched survey responses (i.e., repeated measures) from undergraduate students enrolled in engineering courses that...
#1Peter Hoegen (Radboud University Nijmegen)
Last. Hester Vermeulen (HAN University of Applied Sciences)H-Index: 32
view all 4 authors...
Abstract Background Evidence-based practice has developed over the last 30 years as a tool for the best possible nursing care. Nevertheless, many nurses do not regularly participate in the evidence-based practice process. Barriers to participation include nurses’ self-perceived ability in successfully fulfilling evidence-based practice-related tasks (self-efficacy) and their expectations of the positive outcomes of such tasks (outcome expectancy). To evaluate progress and provide feedback to pro...
#1María Huertas González-Serrano (University of Valencia)H-Index: 6
#2Rómulo Jacobo González-García (Universidad Católica de Valencia San Vicente Mártir)
Last. Ferran Calabuig (University of Valencia)H-Index: 5
view all 4 authors...
Abstract The importance of entrepreneurship in the sports sector has risen recently. However, few studies analyze the determinants of entrepreneurial intentions with sport sciences students using a cross-cultural approach. This study aims to determine the entrepreneurial potential of sports sciences students and analyze the influence of national culture on sports sciences students' entrepreneurial intentions determinants. The sample is composed of 356 university students from Spain and Portugal....
#1Luke K. Fryer (HKU: University of Hong Kong)H-Index: 14
#2Alex Shum (HKU: University of Hong Kong)H-Index: 3
Last. Peter W. K. Lau (HKU: University of Hong Kong)H-Index: 8
view all 4 authors...
Abstract How students experience educational environments and the interconnections between their readiness, task experiences and their long-term desire to reengage with course content are critical questions for educators. Research postgraduate students (n = 310) at a research-intensive university in Hong Kong, engaging in a 24-h introductory teaching course, participated in this study. Learner readiness for the course was assessed as prior Domain interest, self-efficacy, and knowledge. Subsequen...
#1Mathilde Tønning Tønnesen (AU: Aarhus University)H-Index: 1
Last. Klaus G. GrunertH-Index: 83
view all 2 authors...
Abstract In order to achieve a better understanding of young consumers’ deselection of pork, the objective of the present study was to get insight into the influence of attitudes, perceived social norms, abilities, and other psychological factors on pork consumption among young consumers in Denmark and Sweden. Using data collected through questionnaire surveys within a Theory of Planned Behavior framework the study explored the extent to which different psychological factors influence young cons...
#2Tefera Tadesse (AAU: Addis Ababa University)
Last. Nega Jibat (JU: Jimma University)H-Index: 3
view all 3 authors...
Abstract In recent years, there has been a growing interest in the roles of motivation and social context in education. This study tests a new research direction in these areas, based on sociological and psychological theories, examining the linkages between contextual factors, self-efficacy, and quality teaching, as well as possible differences, found among teachers based on gender and education qualification. For this, the study used a cross-sectional survey design collecting quantitative data...
Abstract Techno-stressors stemming from the use of information technology (IT) have become a major source of stress in the modern workplace. While research shows that techno-stressors negatively affect employees' work attitudes and performance, little is known about their effects on employees' non-work lives. This research investigates the impact of techno-stressors on work-life balance and examines job self-efficacy as a buffer of this negative impact via the attenuating effect of emotional exh...